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Creeping barberry is a stoloniferous, sprawling evergreen of stiff habit with small, fragrant, yellow flowers in drooping racemes, followed by showy, purple fruit. The leathery, holly-like, compound leaves are a muted green, some turning mauve, rose, and rust-colored in winter. The plant grows 1-3 ft. in height.
A number of these plants were growing in dappled shade on the forest floor alongside the path.