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Berberis (barberry; family Berberidaceae) A genus of spiny, simple-leaved shrubs whose flowers are trimerous, with spines in threes, the perianth usually consisting of 5 yellow or orange whorls. The fruit is an edible berry. Barberries are much cultivated for ornament, and formerly were grown for their edible fruits. They are a secondary host of wheat rust, so are often eliminated from wheat-growing areas. There are about 450 species, of cosmopolitan distribution in temperate zones and in the mountains of tropical Africa.
berberis (barberry) Genus of c.450 species of shrubs native to temperate regions. The bark and wood are yellow, the stems are usually spiny, and the golden flowers give way to sour blue berries. The stamens are sensitive to touch. It is a host for the plant disease rust. Family Berberidaceae.
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