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Shrubs with Autumn Berries / Autumn Colour from a Berry


 
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James Kilkelly
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Joined: 30 May 2006
Posts: 2142
Location: West of Ireland

PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2006 4:03 pm    Post subject: Shrubs with Autumn Berries / Autumn Colour from a Berry Reply with quote

I have often written at length about the benefits of autumn leaf colour. However for this article, I decided it was the turn of ornamental berry colour. Many berries will cling to skeletal branches of trees and shrubs long after the plants fiery autumn leaves have departed.

In essence, an autumn garden containing plants that produce berries will compensate for flower colours, which can be sadly, be lacking at this time of year. The addition of these berried plants, I feel, is one of the hallmarks of a well-designed garden. It does not matter whether the berry is small, large, glossy, buff, yellow, orange or red. Berries of all shades and sizes are additional autumnal weapons in the guerrilla gardener's armoury.



As well as creating colour and interest for the gardener, another reason to include some autumn/winter berried planting is to provide food for the birds that share the garden with you. These birds are not as loyal as you may think; they will often travel outside your garden to search for food if your planting fails to provide it during a cold winter.

So let's have a quick look at selected shrub varieties that will appeal to both the garden owner and the gardens inhabitants. These varieties are shown in ascending height order.



(1) Cotoneaster dammeri is a red-berried semi-evergreen shrub that grows to a height of 30cm, carpeting to an ultimate spread of 2 metres.

(2) Mahonia aquifolium provides blue-black berries amongst shiny evergreen leaves growing to a height of 1 metre and a spread of 1.5 metres.

(3) Pyracantha "Orange Charmer" is a viciously spiny burglar-proof wall shrub sporting clusters of orange berries, covering a height and spread of 4 metres.

(4) Viburnum opulus is a native shrub that provides shiny red berries resembling coloured glass, growing to a height of 4 metres with a similar spread.

(5) Sambucus niger which is known as wild elderberry is also native and displays large bunches of miniature black berries throughout its height and spread of 6 metres, both this shrub and Viburnum opulus look best if left to grow rampantly in a wild area.

(6) The pick of the hollies is Ilex aquifolium "J.C. van Tol", growing to a height of 6 metres and a spread of 4 metres this large shrub will display its red berries even if no male holly is present in your garden. On that point I must make you aware that many berried plants will require both male and female partners to allow pollination, which in turn causes berries to form. In the case of the holly, it only require a single male to pollinate a harem of females.
Lucky devil.

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poopjeuk
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 02 Feb 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi. in your above article you have two sets of photos and then go on to describe the second set of 6. I'm more interested in the very first photo as it looks like something in my own garden I have been trying to identify.

Its a deciduous shrub growing against a wall with small dark green leaves that then produce red berries in the autumn. Then the leave go red almost over night and about 2 weeks later the leave fall off also almost overnight!

Can you please tell me what it is?

ta
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James Kilkelly
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Joined: 30 May 2006
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Location: West of Ireland

PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello poopjeuk.
The plant in that pic is the herringbone cotoneaster or Cotoneaster horizontalis.
White flowers with a slight pink flushing followed by red berries.
Its small, glossy leaves turn reddish orange in autumn as you say.
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