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Crimson Pygmy Barberry

Berberis thunbergii var. atropurpurea 'Crimson Pygmy'

Crimson Pygmy Barberry


‘Crimson Pygmy’ Barberry is a small, dense, slow growing ornamental shrub and the most popular variety of Japanese Barberry. It is noted for its glistening reddish purple foliage color. This plant is excellent for landscaping as a specimen shrub or for a miniature hedge or border.

Use and Management

The Japanese Barberry is a class of deciduous shrubs with thorns, although rabbits will still eat the plant.

It prefers full to partial sun and the foliage is most colorful when it is in full sun. Being sensitive to sunlight, the more shade the plant receives, the less purple will be seen in the foliage, with green taking over as the dominant color of the plant.

The Barberry prefers a moist, well-drained soil, but will tolerate poor soils. It will grow in height to 2 feet with a spread of 2 – 3 feet.

Additional Characteristics

  • Low maintenance
  • Fine texture
  • Slow growth
  • Likes sun but can grow in partial shade


  • Typically planted in 1 or 3 gal containers, occasionally in 5 gal containers (not as readily available).

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