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Common Name:


Scientific Name:

Berberis trifoliolata

Family Name:



Berberis trifoliolata is a small to medium size coarse textured evergreen shrub. Agarito is valued for its holly-like leaflets, late winter to early spring yellow flowers and red summer fruit. It is an effective barrier plant for adverse sites. Fits well with naturalized landscapes.

Plant Habit or Use:

Shrub, small shrub, medium shrub


sun, partial sun

Flower Color:

Aboundant small yellow fragrant flowers in late winter to early spring.

Blooming Period:

Spring, winter

Fruit Characteristics:

Summer to fall red berries, moderately attractive


3 ft to 5 ft, rarely 8 ft


3 ft to 6 ft

Earth–Kind® Index:

  • Heat Tolerance: High Heat Tolerance
  • Water Requirements: Low Water Use
  • Soil Requirements: Medium Soil Requirements
  • Pest Tolerance: High Pest Resistance
  • Fertility Requirements: Low Fertility Requirements
Explanation of the Earth–Kind® Index breakdown

USDA Hardiness Zones:

7, 8, 9

Regions that intersect these hardiness zones:
Region A - Panhandle and High Plains Region B - North and Central Texas Region C - Northeast and East Texas Region D - West Texas Region E - Upper Rio Grande Region F - Hill Country and Central Coast Region G - Southeast Texas Region H - Rio Grande Valley
Click image for enlarged map of USDA Hardiness Zones

Additional Comments:

One of best native Berberis / Mahonia for use on neutral to alkaline soils. Needs well drained soils, reportedly tolerant of cotton root rot.
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A Special Note about Cool Season Annuals

Cool season annuals typically are planted in the fall or early winter and flower in early spring under moderate temperatures. This group of plant materials includes: pansies, snapdragons, violas, dianthus, flowering cabbage/kale, etc. Because cool season annuals flower in the spring when conditions are mild, most have limited heat tolerance.

As a result cool season annuals do not receive a high Earth–Kind® index despite their outstanding landscape qualities.