Apr 19, 2022
Barberry Varieties Receive Invasive Plant Exemption

March 2022 the State of Pennsylvania exempted all four Japanese barberry varieties in the WorryFree® series WorryFree Plants and brand owner Syn-RG LLC recently announced that in March 2022 the State of Pennsylvania exempted all four Japanese barberry varieties in the WorryFree series (Crimson Cutie, Lemon Cutie, Lemon Glow and Mr. Green Genes) from their list of banned  invasive plants and approved their sale and use in the nursery and landscape trade. 

These barberries were developed by Mark Brand, Ph.D., at the University of Connecticut.

“The key reason for any breeding is to try to create plants that are better than what is currently available, or that can solve a key problem. That thought process for Barberry was put squarely in focus for  me after a meeting in 2000 with nursery industry officials where it was made clear that bans were coming across the northeast U.S. on this staple genus,” says Brand. His research was recently  published in the peer-reviewed journal HortScience, and can be read in full here: https://journals.ashs.org/hortsci/view/journals/hortsci/57/4/article-p581.xml.  

“Barberry thrives in so many different landscape locations while exhibiting great color and form, all in a deer-resistant package. So, this approval is a major win for nurseries and landscapers to continue using this staple, and trust that it won’t produce seed and become invasive” says Emily Chung, executive director of Syn-RG LLC. 

Other state bans are continuously monitored, and exemptions based on this remarkable data are being sought. New York State has exempted Crimson Cutie, Lemon Cutie, and Lemon Glow barberries. 

WorryFree barberries are available from the following licensed growers: Overdevest Nurseries LP. (New Jersey), Prides Corner Farms Inc. (Connecticut), Willoway Nurseries Inc. (Ohio),  Medford Nursery (New Jersey), Buds & Blooms Nursery (North Carolina).