First Editions Cabernet Barberry (Berberis thunbergii ‘Moretti Select’)

First Editions Cabernet Barberry

  • Stays Tight and Compact
  • Incredible Color
  • Rich Burgundy To Purple Color
  • Crimson New Growth in Spring
  • Tiny Yellow Blooms
  • Supports Beneficial Pollinators
  • Orange and Scarlet Fall Color
  • Showy Red Berries for Winter
  • Rarely Needs Pruning
  • Waterwise Once Established
  • Very Cold Hardy

Line your garden beds with an incredible ribbon of easy-care color near ground level. You’ll love the performance and handsome good looks of these compact, purplish-red, sun-loving shrubs.

Beautiful First Editions® Cabernet® Barberry (Berberis thunbergii atropurpurea ‘Moretti Select’) stays tight and low with very little need for pruning. Enjoy a brilliant color display with this landscape workhorse.

You’ll enjoy great color and texture. Colorful Cabernet Barberry fits in any landscape from formal to natural.

Cabernet Barberry is a perfect fit…even in small space gardens. This tough plant is waterwise once established, and requires very little care.

This modern cultivar makes a great foundation plant and defines a border like few other plants can. Make a statement with showy Cabernet as part of the backbone of your garden.

You’ll relish the look of the bright crimson new growth that ages to deep burgundy. The color layering adds a rich, welcome depth to your landscape.

As temperatures drop for fall, the foliage heats up. Rounded Cabernet leaves glow with an intense orange and scarlet fire for fall color.

Tiny yellow blooms support local butterflies and beneficial pollinators. Over the season, they develop into a small harvest of berries for songbirds.

The species Barberry does “too well” in certain areas, but Nature Hills utilizes an online tool called Plant Sentry to stop shipments of regulated plant material into vulnerable areas. Type in your zip code above the Plant Highlights to see if this modern cultivar can be shipped to you.

A truly beautiful plant, Cabernet requires very little pruning. These high-performance plants were field-tested for durability for many years to earn their right to wear the coveted First Editions label.

How to Use First Editions Cabernet Barberry in the Landscape

Add interest to mature foundation plantings with this easy-care choice. Expand the planting outward to include a solid low hedge; or have your evergreen shrubs pruned back to make room for a splash of Cabernet.

Plant them 20 inches apart on center, measuring from the center of one to the center of the next. They’ll fill in to create a seamless presentation.

Add more rows staggered in a zigzagging planting pattern for an effective mass planting. Add color all season-long!

As a bonus, these petite plants sport sharp thorns along the length of their stems. Try them as beautiful barrier plants where you want to control foot traffic and protect your property.

Choose Cabernet Barberry to reduce work for yourself and get your weekends back. Plant them along the front of your shrub border to hide the base of bare “legs” of taller shrubs.

These are an excellent partner for mature evergreen shrubs and trees. Create a curved mulched bed on the sunny side; add Red Twig Dogwood, Ornamental Grasses, Shrub Roses and polish up with Cabernet Barberry for a spectacular display all year.

In a modern space, create a bold feature with a raised concrete planter bed with wide sides for seating. Plant a massed monoculture of Cabernet in the center and place those unforgettable hues on full display.

You can also use Cabernet Barberry as a modern twist on traditional Boxwood edging. Create open rectangular beds and fill with Cabernet Splash™ Blueberry or First Editions® Marmalade® Potentilla.

Tips for Care

Achieve the best color in full sun, where they’ll get at least six hours of direct sunlight a day. The color won’t be as vivid in partially shaded locations…the more sun, the better!

Well-drained soils are important to keep the root system happy. Elevate the plants in a planting mound or raised bed, if you need to improve drainage.

Light pruning is only necessary to shape it. You’ll want to wear thick gloves when working with Barberry, and place the trimmings in yard waste bags…not the compost pile.

Give it a careful schedule of moderate water the first season in your landscape. After that, Cabernet does become waterwise, but you’ll still want to give supplemental water during extended drought.

Fertilize in early spring with a formula for Acid Loving plants according to label directions. Apply a three-inch layer of pine bark or pine straw mulch, pulling it back from directly touching the stems for proper air circulation.

Deer don’t prefer the taste, but we always recommend Deer Repellent Spray on new plantings if you live in an area with heavy pressure. Reapply according to the directions through the growing season.

You’ll be thrilled with the high performance of easy-care Cabernet Barberry.

First Editions Cabernet Barberry (Berberis thunbergii ‘Moretti Select’) Details

Common name First Editions Cabernet Barberry
Botanical name Berberis thunbergii 'Moretti Select'
Plant type Deciduous
Hardiness zone 4-7
Growth rate Slow
Height 2 ft.
Width 2 - 3 ft.
Sunlight Full Sun
Moisture Low Once Established
Soil condition Well Drained
Pollinator-friendly Yes
Pruning time Early Spring
Flower color Yellow
Leaf color Deep Red Burgundy