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28/03/2008


my photo

BERBERIS DARWINII

Also known as Barberry, this evergreen shrub was discovered in South America by Charles Darwin in 1835. If you want colour in your garden at this time of year, this is the shrub to have. It bears masses of small clusters of the brightest orange of flowers, and very often has a second flush in the Autumn.

Mine stands alone, but used as a full hedge its thorniness is a great deterrent, adding security to the garden. It requires careful pruning, as it has spiny holly-like leaves which will tear your hands to shreds if you are not wearing thick leather gardening gloves. This is one occasion when I do wear gloves, people who know me know that I would rather get dirt up my fingernails, although saying that, those latex disposable gloves come in handy for various tasks around the garden!

A great use for the prunings, is to lay them over your freshly dug over beds to keep the neighbours' cats off, don't get me wrong, I love cats, but my garden is not to be used as a WC for all and sundry!

14 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Sadly, cats simply love freshly dug earth.
So inviting
always a challenge to get rid of them!

elaine said...

Thanks for the tips. I especially like the idea of the disposable gloves. My gardening gloves are too confining, I feel clumsy in them when working with little seedlings and such. xox

VP said...

I hate gloves too Louise. I sometimes find a 'stray' barberry pruning blown in from my neighbours front garden into my front side garden - ouch!

Have a great weekend
xx

Levin (and Emily) said...

our neighbours have 11 cats and 3 dogs (and lots of other animals). their cats are too scared to go to the toilet in their own yard so they come to us. we need lots and lots of those prunings!!!
it's a beautiful plant, does it require much water??
l
x

Glo said...

What a lovely site you have here, Louise. The photo of your Barberry shrub is stunning, and when I clicked on it, what detail! I also love your violet shots; violets are also blooming here :)

I'll be back!

Glo said...

See how quick I am..I'm back in a flash! I just read your comment on my new blog. Thank you! I mentioned that I had visited West Sussex four years ago at this time. It's funny because this morning I awoke to snow flakes falling which made me think of Amberley, West Sussex, where the exact thing happened while I was there. Cheers :)

daffy said...

Louise if you can scare cats can I borrow you to get rid of the little bunnies in my garden! (Goodness knows what they are using my garden for! All night raves I think! Oh and petal chewing parties!)

Becca said...

I am so grateful that you stopped by my site ... I had somehow lost your website on my typelists ... so am so glad to find you again!

Threadspider said...

I am found of the barberry although I don't grow it, and share your dislike of other people's cats using my garden as WC. I'm not a great cat lover-can take them or leave them-and find rose prunings work well as a deterrent too.
Hope you are enjoying some Spring weather at last.

Kari & Kijsa said...

Love your photo! great info!

blessings,
kari & kijsa

the flour loft said...

Hi Louise,
we need to get some prunings to keep the cats off our veg beds. thanks for the tip. Hope you have a wonderful week.
ginny x
ps. if you are up for a tag check out my blog.

starnitesky said...

I may get one of these plants as I am having lots of problems with cats, I have tried all sorts over the winter and still they keep coming.

I am enjoying reading your blog,lots of good information - thank you.

nikkipolani said...

Good tip on cat deterrence, Louise! I love cats, too, but leaving little surprises in little mounds is not nice.

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