Plant of Merit: Mahonia x media ‘Charity,’ evergreen shrub

“Charity” was a chance seedling at Slieve Donard Nursery in Northern Ireland years ago, so we are the fortunate recipients of nature’s gift. (Sandra Schumacher)

“Charity” was a chance seedling at Slieve Donard Nursery in Northern Ireland years ago, so we are the fortunate recipients of nature’s gift. (Sandra Schumacher)

What: Mahonia x media “Charity” is a statuesque, evergreen shrub with bright yellow flowers that bloom from late fall through the winter. It is an incredible focal point in any garden because of its size and because its flowers seem to explode. The leaves are prickly and stiff like holly and it produces clusters of grape-like berries. The hummingbirds can’t seem to get enough of those yellow flowers. Winter blooming hellebores are perfect companion plants.

Sun/shade: This shrub grows well in part sun/full sun or dappled shade.

Size: “Charity” matures at 10 feet tall and 5 feet wide.

Find it: Local full-service nurseries will carry mahonias, as they are now in bloom.

— Sandra Schumacher

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