Mahonia is a genus of about 70 species of evergreen shrubs found in woodlands and rocky areas of the Himalaya, East Asia, Central and North America. They are common garden shrubs, grown for their attractive foliage, bright, fragrant flowers, and decorative and edible fruits. The flowers look like yellow lily-of-the-valley and the foliage is dark green and shiny.
Many mahonias flower in winter, from December to March. This one flowers from March to April.
The mahonia’s blue-black, clustered fruits give rise to its common name of Oregon grape. These acidic fruits can be eaten raw or cooked, but are rather nice raw, especially when added to muesli or porridge. Unfortunately, they have relatively little flesh and a lot of seeds!