Darwin's barberry Berberis darwinii, photographed by Michael Wolf.

Belongs within: Ranunculales.

The Berberidaceae are a family of flowering plants containing the barberries and related species. Members of the subfamily Berberidoideae and the sacred bamboo Nandina domestica are shrubs whereas Podophylloideae and Leonticoideae are perennial herbs.Na

Characters (from Whetstone, Atkinson & Spaulding): Herbs or shrubs (rarely trees), perennial, evergreen or deciduous, sometimes rhizomatous. Stems with or without spines. Leaves alternate, opposite, or fascicled, simple, 2-3-foliolate, or 1-3-pinnately or 2-3(-4)-ternately compound; stipules present or absent; venation pinnate or palmate. Inflorescences terminal or axillary, racemes, cymes, umbels (or umbel-like), spikes, or panicles, or flowers solitary or in pairs, flowers pedicellate or sessile. Flowers bisexual, inconspicuous or showy, radially symmetric; stipitate glands usually absent; sepaloid bracteoles 0-9; perianth sometimes absent, more frequently present, 2- or 3-merous, or sepals and petals intergrading; sepals 6, distinct, often petaloid and colored, not spurred; petals 6-9, distinct, plane or hooded; nectary present; stamens 6; anthers dehiscing by valves or longitudinal slits; ovary superior, apparently 1-carpellate; placentation marginal or appearing basal; style present or absent, sometimes persistent in fruit as beak. Fruits follicles, berries, or utricles. Seeds 1-50, sometimes arillate; endosperm abundant; embryo large or small.

    |  i. s.: Achlys H93
    |           |--A. californica H93
    |           `--A. triphylla H93
    |         Vancouveria H93
    |           |--V. chrysantha H93
    |           |--V. hexandra H93
    |           `--V. planipetala H93
    |         Winchellia triphylla Lesquereux 1893 CBH93
    |--Nandina [Nandinoideae] T00
    |    `--N. domestica MS10
    |--Leonticoideae T00
    |    |--Caulophyllum thalictroides T00, J23
    |    |--Gymnospermium T00
    |    `--Leontice T00
    |--Podophylloideae [Epimedioideae] T00
    |    |--Epimedium DS04
    |    |    |--E. grandiflorum DS04
    |    |    `--E. koreanum DS04
    |    `--Podophyllum BL04
    |         |--P. hexandrum O88
    |         `--P. peltatum BL04
    `--Berberidoideae T00
         |--Mahonia T00
         |    |--M. bealei DS04
         |    `--M. leschenaultii H90
         `--Berberis SL06
              |--B. amurensis MH98
              |--B. angulosa O88
              |--B. aquifolium H93
              |    |--B. a. var. aquifolium H93
              |    |--B. a. var. dictyota H93
              |    `--B. a. var. repens [incl. B. amplectens, B. pumila, B. sonnei, Mahonia sonnei] H93
              |--B. aristata SDK05
              |--B. buxifolia HH03
              |--B. canadensis F37
              |--B. ceratophylla O88
              |--B. concinna O88
              |--B. cretica SL06
              |--B. darwinii BKS98
              |--B. empetrifolia D03
              |--B. erythroclada O88
              |--B. everestiana O88
              |    |--B. e. var. everestiana O88
              |    `--B. e. var. ventosa O88
              |--B. fendleri F37
              |--B. fremontii [incl. B. higginsiae, Mahonia higginsiae] H93
              |--B. haematocarpa BT72
              |--B. hamiltoniana O88
              |--B. heterophylla O06
              |--B. ilicifolia CL85
              |--B. insignis O88
              |--B. microphylla D03
              |--B. mucrifolia O88
              |--B. nervosa [incl. Mahonia nervosa var. mendocinensis] H93
              |--B. nevinii [=Mahonia nevinii] H93
              |--B. parisepala O88
              |--B. pinnata H93
              |    |--B. p. ssp. pinnata H93
              |    `--B. p. ssp. insularis H93
              |--B. poluninii O88
              |--B. thunbergii SBM11
              |--B. trifoliolata DD06
              |--B. tsarica O88
              |--B. umbellata O88
              `--B. vulgaris C55

*Type species of generic name indicated


[BKS98] Baars, R., D. Kelly & A. D. Sparrow. 1998. Liane distribution within native forest remnants in two regions of the South Island, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 22 (1): 71–85.

[BT72] Baker, E. W., & D. M. Tuttle. 1972. New species and further notes on the Tetranychoidea mostly from the southwestern United States (Acarina: Tetranychidae and Tenuipalpidae). Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology 116: 1–37.

[BL04] Barkman, T. J., S.-H. Lim, K. M. Salleh & J. Nais. 2004. Mitochondrial DNA sequences reveal the photosynthetic relatives of Rafflesia, the world’s largest flower. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 101 (3): 787–792.

[C55] Candolle, A. de. 1855. Géographie Botanique Raisonée: Ou exposition des faits principaux et des lois concernant la distribution géographique des plantes de l’époque actuelle vol. 2. Librairie de Victor Masson: Paris.

[CL85] Cokendolpher, J. C., & D. Lanfranco L. 1985. Opiliones from the Cape Horn Archipelago: New southern records for harvestmen. Journal of Arachnology 13: 311–319.

[CBH93] Collinson, M. E., M. C. Boulter & P. L. Holmes. 1993. Magnoliophyta (‘Angiospermae’). In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 809–841. Chapman & Hall: London.

[DS04] Davis, J. I., D. W. Stevenson, G. Petersen, O. Seberg, L. M. Campbell, J. V. Freudenstein, D. H. Goldman, C. R. Hardy, F. A. Michelangeli, M. P. Simmons, C. D. Specht, F. Vergara-Silva & M. Gandolfo. 2004. A phylogeny of the monocots, as inferred from rbcL and atpA sequence variation, and a comparison of methods for calculating jackknife and bootstrap values. Systematic Botany 29 (3): 467–510.

[DD06] Doty, J. B., & R. C. Dowler. 2006. Denning ecology in sympatric populations of skunks (Spilogale gracilis and Mephitis mephitis) in west-central Texas. Journal of Mammalogy 87 (1): 131–138.

[D03] Dusén, P. 1903. The vegetation of western Patagonia. In: Scott, W. B. (ed.) Reports of the Princeton University Expeditions to Patagonia, 1896–1899 vol. 8. Botany pp. 1–34. The University: Princeton (New Jersey).

[F37] Fracker, S. B. 1937. Technique of large-scale operations in pest control. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 39 (3): 41–58.

[H90] Harden, G. J. (ed.) 1990. Flora of New South Wales vol. 1. New South Wales University Press.

[HH03] Hernández, J. R., & J. F. Hennen. 2003. Rust fungi causing galls, witches’ brooms, and other abnormal plant growths in northwestern Argentina. Mycologia 95 (4): 728–755.

[H93] Hickman, J. C. (ed.) 1993. The Jepson Manual: Higher Plants of California. University of California Press: Berkeley (California).

[J23] James, E. 1823. Account of an Expedition from Pittsburgh to the Rocky Mountains, performed in the years 1819 and '20, by order of the Hon. J. C. Calhoun, sec'y of war: under the command of Major Stephen H. Long. From the notes of Major Long, Mr. T. Say, and other gentlemen of the exploring party vol. 1. H. C. Carey & I. Lea: Philadelphia.

[MS10] Moore, M. J., P. S. Soltis, C. D. Bell, J. G. Burleigh & D. E. Soltis. 2010. Phylogenetic analysis of 83 plastid genes further resolves the early diversification of eudicots. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 107 (10): 4623–4628.

[MH98] Morikawa, H., A. Higaki, M. Nohno, M. Takahashi, M. Kamada, M. Nakata, G. Toyohara, Y. Okamura, K. Matsui, S. Kitani, K. Fujita, K. Irifune & N. Goshima. 1998. More than a 600-fold variation in nitrogen dioxide assimilation among 217 plant taxa. Plant, Cell and Environment 21: 180–190.

[O88] Ohba, H. 1988. The alpine flora of the Nepal Himalayas: an introductory note. In: Ohba, H., & S. B. Malla (eds) The Himalayan Plants vol. 1. The University Museum, University of Tokyo, Bulletin 31: 19–46.

[O06] Outes, F. F. 1906. Instrumentos modernos de los Onas (Tierra del Fuego). Anales del Museo Nacional de Buenos Aires, serie 3, 6: 287–296.

[SL06] Schulz, H.-J., & P. Lymberakis. 2006. First contribution to the knowledge of the Collembola fauna of the White Mountains (Lefká Óri) in west Crete (Insecta, Collembola, Isotomidae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 86 (2): 229–234.

[SDK05] Sharma, L. K., N. K. Dadhich & A. Kumar. 2005. Plant based veterinary medicine from traditional knowledge of India. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 47: 43–52.

[SBM11] Solomon, E. P., L. R. Berg & D. W. Martin (eds) 2011. Biology 9th ed. Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning.

[T00] Thorne, R. F. 2000. The classification and geography of the flowering plants: dicotyledons of the class Angiospermae (subclasses Magnoliidae, Ranunculidae, Caryophyllidae, Dilleniidae, Rosidae, Asteridae, and Lamiidae). The Botanical Review 66: 441–647.

Last updated: 7 June 2022.

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