Berberis fremontii
Common name: 
Fremont Barberry
Fremont Mahonia
BER-ber-is FREE-mont-ee-eye
Berberis higginsiae, Mahonia fremontii
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Broadleaf evergreen shrub, usually 5-10 ft (1.3-3 m) tall, but may reach 15 ft (4.5 m).   Leaves alternate, pinnately compound, crowded on short lateral stems, 3-–6 cm long, 3-–7(9) leaflets, each leaflet wavy, thick and rigid, generally folded along midrib, may or may not be lobed, base truncate to wedge-shaped, tip generally acute, margin spine-tipped with 3-8 teeth, each 2-3 mm long, dull gray-green.  Flowers yellow, 6-petaled, in 5 cm clusters of 8-12 flowers.  Fruit yellowish or purplish red to dark purple, ovoid to spherical, 6-15 mm wide.
  • Sun, good drainage
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 5      Native to the southwest; Utah, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Arizona, California and Mexico.  Mostly on slopes and flats in desert grassland and pinyon-juniper woodland.  Intergrades with B. haematocarpa, especially in the Mojave Desert.
  • fremontii:  after Gen. John Charles Fremont (1813-1890).  He led two expeditions into California, becoming the first botanical collector in the Sierra Nevada.  He was a solider, explorer, the first U.S. Senator from California, ran unsuccessfully for President, and was governor of the Arizona Territory.
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit, spring flowering

    plant habit, spring flowering

  • flower buds and leaves

    flower buds and leaves

  • flowers


  • plant habit and branches

    plant habit and branches

  • fruit cluster

    fruit cluster

  • fruit and leaves

    fruit and leaves

  • leaf


  • leaf