Forestiera neomexicana Berry Girl
Berry Girl New Mexico Privet (Desert Olive)
Details12-18' tall x 12' wide (seed propagated). A deciduous, native shrub that develops great character with age. It can be grown into a dense hedge, or pruned to form a twisting, multi-stemmed small tree. The beautiful whitish bark accentuates the bright yellow fall foliage. Female plants produce considerable quantities of blue-black berries that are eaten by birds. Order at least one male/female plants to ensure berry set. A moderate to fast grower in any soil. Although drought tolerant, regular watering will help the plant to thrive and fill out quickly.
|Common Name||Berry Girl New Mexico Privet (Desert Olive)|
|Botanical Name||Forestiera neomexicana|
|Zones||4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9|
|Light Requirements||Full Sun|
|Mature Height||12-18' tall|
|Mature Spread||12' wide|
|Ships As||Potted Plant|
|Planting Time||Spring / Summer, Fall|
|Soil Type||Clay Soil, Sandy Soil, Average Soil|
|Soil Moisture||Drought Resistant / Waterwise|
|Amount of Rain||10 to 20", 20 to 30", 30 to 40"|
|Special Groups||High Country Gardens Exclusive, High Country Gardens Introduction|
|Ideal Region||Northeast, Midwest, Southwest, West, Pacific Northwest|
|Neonicotinoid-Free||Yes - Learn More|
|Ships to Hawaii, Alaska & Canada||No|
The shrubs and trees we sell are 1-2 year-old seedlings. These young plants appreciate some extra attention during their first 3 years in your landscape.
Preferred growing conditions:
- Check each species soil preferences before planting. Some do well in clay while others do not.
- Mulch with common mulching materials. As they get larger (2 ft. or more in height), thicken the mulch layer to a depth of 2-3 inches.
- Even xeric (waterwise) species will establish better and grow more quickly when given regular irrigation during the first 3 years in the garden. As they begin to reach maturity, watering frequency can be reduced to a good deep soaking every 10 to 14 days during the heat of summer.
- Plant in full sun or part sun depending on plant preference.
- Dig a wide but shallow hole and enrich the soil with ample amounts of compost and Yum Yum. This will help them to grow and mature more quickly. Special comments:
- Most native shrubs and trees are highly recommended for providing wildlife habitat (nesting spots, fruit or seeds for songbirds and mammals, nectar for pollinators).
- They are excellent for use to grow as natural (un-sheared!) hedges along fences, property lines and driveways. They live for many years once established. Garden Care:
- Fertilize in the fall with Yum Yum Mix and good quality compost. This is most important during the first 3 years in the landscape. Established plants don't need to be fertilized (unless growth is stunted by extremely poor soils).
- Where browsing animals (rabbits, deer and others) are a problem, it is advisable to protect young plants with a wire cage. These can be removed after 3-4 years in the ground.
- Mulching is essential to maintain the soil moisture these woody plants need to establish their deep growing roots. Be sure and replenish the mulch in fall and summer to keep it sufficiently deep.
View more Planting Guides, or download our complete Planting Guide for tips on caring for your plants when you receive your order, as well as planting instructions for Perennials, Spring-Planted Bulbs, Fall-Planted Bulbs, Cacti & Succulents, Xeric Plants and more.
Plant Shipping: Buy now and we will ship your order at the ideal planting time for your region. Spring-Planted Perennial and Bulb orders will ship from February 27-June 30, warmest zones first.
Most plant and bulb orders arrive within 2-6 days, or less, of leaving our greenhouses in Colorado. This prompt delivery is provided without additional express charges.
Grass Plugs Will ship at planting time in spring, beginning in late February.
Wildflower Seed & Grass Seed Orders ship within 2-3 days.
Standard shipping costs are $4.99 and up, depending on the size of the order.
Make Fast Even Faster: For ‘Rush’ same week delivery, please call customer service at 800-925-9387.
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Comments about High Country Gardens Forestiera neomexicana Berry Girl:
I have a male and female New Mexico Privet growing side by side on the North side of my house. The Privets get both morning and afternoon sun as they are in an East-West corridor along the faux-adobe wall. The female grows much more densely than the male. I had a Robin that sat on the wall and ate berries all winter long. He was very content and very plump! This summer I have a small bird nesting in the female. The Privets are used as a screen between me and my neighbor. I prefer the female growth formation. This is a hardy pretty bush that can be pruned back extensively. The Privet is cold hardy and tolerates high winds well.
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USDA Hardiness Planting Zones
To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.
- If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F (zone 5) then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
- If you live in very warm winter areas (zones 9-11) plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy (rest).
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