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Mahonia trifoliolata (Moricand) Fedde

Modern name

Mahonia trifoliolata (Moric.) Fedde


Berberis trifoliolata Moricand

The typical state of this species is confined to S. Texas and bears lustrous green leaves. The following variety is more widely distributed in the wild and is the one commonly seen in cultivation:

var. glauca I. M. Johnston – An erect, rigid shrub 6 or 8 ft high, with only three leaflets to each leaf. Leaflets glaucous or almost white, shaped like a spear-head, 1 to 2 in. long, 14 to 35 in. wide, tapering to a long, spine-tipped point, and bulging at each side into one or two spine-tipped lobes. Flowers yellow, borne in short corymbs. Fruits oval or roundish, black with a blue bloom.

This rare shrub ranges from W. Texas to N. Mexico, and is only hardy against a sunny wall, or in exceptionally mild districts. There was once an old bush, 8 ft high, growing against the house wall at Bayfordbury in Herts.

This variety differs from all the other cultivated mahonias in the glaucous-white leaves with only three leaflets. It was introduced to Britain in 1839 by Hartweg, who collected the seeds in Mexico on the road from Zacatecas to San Luis Potosi.



Other species in the genus