A spiny, evergreen shrub which grows in woodland and scrub, on roadsides, hedge banks and walls, and as an occasional relic of cultivation. Reproduction is by seed, which can be bird-sown. Lowland.
This species was discovered by Charles Darwin on the Beagle voyage in 1835, and first cultivated in 1849. It is now widely grown. It was recorded from the wild by 1928, and is likely to be increasing because of its popularity in roadside plantings.
Native of S. America (Argentina, Chile).
PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.