Invasive SpeciesJapanese barberry

Berberis thunbergii
NOT FOUND by Waynflete2
ID Confirmed
Quality checked by peer edit
Peer reviewed by
Field Notes
Time: 12:18 PM, Temp: 51˚, Date: 5/13/13. There is a lot of sun, with patches of shade. There is a breeze that comes every few seconds. The man made structures are the concrete sidewalk and the green fences, as well as the low brick wall surrounding the little garden and the parking lot filled with cars. Lots of green plants grow around the fence. There is a dark, shady alleyway, with little green buds dusting the concrete ground. It would be warm, but the breeze makes it slightly colder. In the alleyway there is a shiny motorcycle, silver and black. Green plants cover most of the ground, without a lot of dirt and rocks. In the little garden There is a tree surrounded by little purple and white flowers. Other than that, there are not a lot of trees. Behind the little garden there is a brick building, Emery. Our plant, the common barberry, was found near the green fence, growing out of a small patch of dirt, surrounded by concrete and in the shade.
A sketch of our study site.
Supporting Evidence
Photo of my evidence.
We found the Common Barberry which is similar to the Japanese Barberry. However, the thorns on the Common Barberry are larger than the ones on the Japanese Barberry, but both are a reddish brown color.
Photo of my evidence.
The common barberry is different from the Japanese barberry because it has a different bud shape and color. The Common Barberry has more yellow/green buds that dangle on chains versus the yellow/pink color of the Japanese barberry buds that are in groups of three. The buds are also smaller, and there is more of them. There is about 15-20 buds on each chain of the Common Barberry
Photo of my evidence.
When compared to the Japanese Barberry you can see that it has bigger darker leaves. The leaves have little ridges instead of smooth edges. LEFT: Japanese Barberry. RIGHT: common barberry.
Species Observation: Species Looked For
Did you find it?: 
I think I did not find it
Scientific name:
Berberis thunbergii
Common name:
Japanese barberry
Sampling method: 
Just looking around
Photo of our sampling method.
Place Studied
We’re sorry, JavaScript is required to view the map. If JavaScript is you may wish to upgrade to a newer browser in order to view this map.
Map this species
N 43.646848 °
W -70.268961 °
Observation Site Information
A photo of our study site.
Upland - Developed areas
Trip Information
Waynflete School campus
Trip date: 
Mon, 2013-05-13 12:30
Town or city: 
Type of investigation: 
Species and Habitat Survey
Habitat Observations
Species diversity: 
Evidence of vectors: 
Paved road
Recent disturbance
Tree canopy cover: 
Soil moisture: 


Right on! Wow.

I'm really excited about and impressed with your observation. You've mastered how to tell these two similar species apart, and you have communicated your case (that this is common barberry, not Japanese barberry) really clearly and confidently.

I appreciate the extra steps you took in your third evidence photo to show Japanese barberry and common barberry side by side.

Your sketch is scientifically sound and artistically appealing all at once!

More data from Waynflete2, please.