Of the two species of Oregon Grape on the property, this one (Mahonia nervosa) is the more shade tolerant and a nice patch of it grows under the densest patch of older Garry Oaks. The name refers to the matte finish of the leaves when compared to Tall Oregon Grape. Like that species, winter leaf colour varies and some individuals can have winter leaves of purples, reds and even brilliant scarlets. David Douglas; the botanist the Douglas-fir is named after, brought both species back to England for the gardens. Of the two, he preferred this one. I tend to agree, this species is very attractive, seldom requires cutting back, and, by merits of its shade tolerance, often is the answer to a difficult gardening problem - what to plant in dry shade? Berries of both species are edible and make great jelly, either alone or combined with salal berries.
Two biologists on a beautiful property armed with cameras, smart phones and a marginal knowledge of websites took up the challenge of documenting one species a day on that property. Join along! Posts and photographs by Leah Ramsay and David Fraser (unless otherwise stated; started January 1, 2014.