Berberis × gladwynensis ‘William Penn’

William Penn barberry

  • © - SB Johnny

Outstanding Qualities

This handsome evergreen shrub is covered with dark green shiny leaves that hide sharp spiny stems. It is an excellent low barrier shrub that can be left to grow naturally or can be clipped into a tight impenetrable hedge. In spring primrose yellow flowers dangle in clusters amongst the foliage. In the fall the interior leaves turn a bright red and glow beneath the remaining evergreen leaves. If grown in the sun the winter foliage will be blushed plum-purple until spring.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: mounding shrub

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 5 ft. 0 in. (1.52 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 6 ft. 0 in. (1.83 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 6 ft. 0 in. (1.83 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 7 ft. 0 in. (2.13 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Flower Color: yellow

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun or light to dappled shade

Water Requirements: occasional watering

Seasonal Interest: This tough shrub has year round interest with its shiny evergreen foliage, yellow spring flowers and dotted red fall color.

Wildlife Associations: bees, birds

Resistant to: rabbits, deer, slug, snail

Colors & Combos

Great Plant Combinations: Cotoneaster adpressus ‘Little Gem’, Nandina domestica ‘Gulf Stream’, Prunus laurocerasus ‘Mount Vernon’, Spiraea japonica ‘Walbuma’ MAGIC CARPET®, Helleborus x sternii

Great Color Contrasts: orange, white

Great Color Partners: blue, burgundy, red

Culture Notes
This adaptable shrub grows well in full sun to dappled shade. It prefers a location with well-drained soil, but will tolerate sand and clay. Once established it only needs occasional watering during dry weather, especially in sandy soils or in full sun. If grown in shade, this shrub can tolerate drought. Light pruning can be done in winter to help maintain its form, but is generally not necessary.