Berberis trifoliata

Latin Name: Berberis trifoliata
Common Name: Algerita, agerita, desert holly, Paisano Bush
Mature Height (ft): 3-8'
Mature Width: 3-7'

Mature Shape

Almost as wide as tall, dense everygreen shrub.
Mulch: Inorganic.

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Native evergreen shrub that makes an excellent hedge plant and wind break. Its blue-green prickly leaves keep the unwanted out (to a point). Please allow room for its spread.

A habitat plant for shelter and as a food source of food for birds and other wildlife that is an attractive addition to the home landscape, where an evergreen shrub is called for in a sunny spot. Sun yellow flowers in March. Cold hardy to -20°, algerita can be found growing from 4000 to 7000 ft. in elevation in Texas, the southwest and Mexico.

Algarita belongs to the barberry family; one of its distinguishing characteristics is the yellow inner bark. Mahonia repens, now named Berberis repens prefers shady and moister locations. Berberis haematocarpa, B. fremontii and B. fendleri are three more southwest native barberries. Instead of always reaching for the Chinese or Japanese barberries, plant American.



Use in Garden

Sun to sun/part shade location. Shrub border. Wind break. Native plant garden. Habitat garden. Berberis trifoliata pairs well with Atriplex confertifolia, a silver-gray evergreen shrub, agaves, and Rhus aromatica, 'Gro Lo' and Baileya multiradata, desert marigold. California and Mexican poppies, Eschscholzia californica (and E. californica ssp. mexicana) seeded annually provided more color. Add any of the cold hardy Echinocereus cacti for more spring interest.


None to speak of.