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Gloucestershire, United Kingdom Gb

Can anyone identify this plant please? A friend of mine has it growing in her garden by accident! She didn't plant it.
Shiny prickly leaves.
She says it has been there about 2 years so it hasn't grown much!




It looks to me like a chestnut tree. If there are some nearby, may have blown over, or buried by a squirrel.

14 Sep, 2015


If evergreen, maybe a Holly, a Holly Oak, or an evergreen species of Prunus. It looks like it's in a tough spot, which may account for the slow growth, though the oak, at least, spends its first few years growing roots.

14 Sep, 2015


my first thought was one of the sweet chestnuts.

14 Sep, 2015


Could easily be--chestnuts don't grow where I am. Hmpph! All of the pictures that I can find are either horsechestnuts, or have blunter lobes. Still a possibility--seedlings of any tree have incredibly variable foliage, only occasionally matching the adult's.

15 Sep, 2015


Mahonia aquifolium? I saw some growing wild today and the seedlings were just like this.

15 Sep, 2015


Could be, though I would expect the leaves to be compound by this time. That does suggest a another possibility, though--one of the evergreen Berberis species.

15 Sep, 2015


Thank you for all your replies everyone.

I think we have finally identified it as a Berberis Julianae.

16 Sep, 2015


I also think it is a kind of Mahonia still quite young So the leaves will darken as it matures.

16 Sep, 2015


Well, Kaiglen, remember that Mahonias have pinnately compound leaves, usually from an early age, while this seedling has simple leaves, even after 2 years.

17 Sep, 2015

How do I say thanks?

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