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Compact Oregon Grape Holly

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Compact form of a great native shrub! 

We know that some of you out there only think of the great Northwest forests as home to the legendary Bigfoot and his kin. Hopefully we can enlighten you to some of the other natural wonders in those forests. Let’s start here - Compact Oregon Grape Holly (Mahonia aquifolium 'compacta') is a new, much more compact form of the American native mahonia that is so prevalent in the pine and fir forests of the great Northwest. Its smaller size makes it much more versatile as a landscape shrub than its big brethren, though. The current trend is toward smaller and urban gardens, so there is a need for smaller plants to fit those spaces, and this small shrub does it better than most.

Oregon Grape Holly is a fantastic plant. It’s spiky leathery leaves are evergreen, but they sport a couple of color changes throughout the year – the bronze-red new growth turns to glossy deep green in the summer then to purple-red for the fall and winter months. If that weren’t enough, there are also sunny yellow late spring flowers followed by deep purple summer berries. Now imagine all of this on a compact plant that will fit just about anywhere.

Use this native as a small hedge or around a deck or steps to hide the foundations. It also hides the leggy bottoms of taller plants if you put it in front of the border. Try it by rocks, dry streambeds or water features for an interesting foliage juxtaposition. It is a perfect choice for massed panting and big borders, too.

This is an excellent choice for the home garden – durable, low-maintenance and beautiful. Add a few to your garden today. (You’ll make a Sasquatch proud!)

* Easy care
* Compact form
* Scented flowers
* Ornamental berries
* Year-round interest


Compact Oregon Grape Holly Is Suited to Grow in Zones 5-9
Growing Zones 5-9
More Information
Brand Nature Hills Nursery
Botanical Name Mahonia aquifolium 'Compacta'
Foliage Broadleaved evergreen
Mature Height 2 - 3 feet
Mature Spread 3 - 4 feet
Soil Type Well drained
Moisture Regular watering in extreme heat
Sun Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Growth Rate Medium
Flower Color Yellow
Foliage Color Bronzy maturing to green, fall reddish
Fall Color Burgundy / Purple, Evergreen
Fruiting Time Summer, fall