Berberis ‘Crimson Pygmy’

(Japanese Barberry)

By November 5, 2021
Close up of Berberis 'Crimson Pygmy' shrub's purple leaves and berries

About Berberis ‘Crimson Pygmy’ (Japanese Barberry)

This compact dwarf shrub is known as Berberis ‘Crimson Pygmy’. Native to Central and Western Asia, this low maintenance shrub features small, deep crimson colored leaves. Its densely packed obovate shaped leaves are accompanied by pale yellow flowers in late spring while during the fall, its leaves turn bright red and welcome bright red berries offering an attractive snack to passing birds. Growing an average landscape size of 18-24″ tall by 30-35″ wide, this variety has been used as a deer deterrent due to its sharp thorns.

Care and planting instructions

Plant Japanese Barberry in an area that receives full to partial sun exposure using well-draining soil. Known to be hardy, withstanding harsh conditions and occasional neglect, you should water this plant regularly after planting to encourage a healthy root system then reduce frequency so that the soil never remains soggy. During its winter dormancy, watering can be further reduced to infrequently. If desired, use a general fertilizer in the spring as new growth begins. Growing at a slow to average pace, regular pruning won’t be necessary but this shrub can be pruned before new growth in the spring to control shape or size.

Landscape design ideas

Berberis ‘Crimson Pygmy’ is compact in size making it optimal for use as a border, low growing hedge, and planted in multiples on hillsides. For those seeking an interesting ornamental plant, Japanese Barberry is prized for its convenient hardiness and low maintenance characteristics.

Botanical Name: Berberis 'Crimson Pygmy'

Common Name: Japanese Barberry

Average Landscape Size: 18-24" x 30-35"

Plant Type: Deciduous

Bloom Color: Pale Yellow

Berry Color: Red

Foliage Color: Crimson Red

Forms: Shrub

Sizes: 1 & 5 gallon

Special Features: Attracts Birds, Deer Resistant, Dramatic Color, Drought Tolerant, Low Maintenance, Rabbit Resistant, Waterwise, Hedging Plant, Seasonal Color Change to Foliage, Easy Pruning, Ornamental Plant, Tolerates Light Frost,