Plant of the Week: Proud Berry Coral Berry

Proud Berry coral berry from Proven Winners

It's the berries!

Proud Berry™ Symphoricarpos is an improved new coral berry with compact growth and a profusion of bright pink berries in late summer and fall. The berry display on this plant is just outstanding. Use this native plant in cutting gardens or as a mass planting.

Proud Berry Symphoricarpos grows in full sun or partial shade and is deer-resistant. It gets 3-4' tall and wide and is hardy to USDA Zone 3.

Look for this new variety at retail, spring of 2017.

Proud Berry coral berry from Proven Winners
Proud Berry coral berry stays a compact 3-4' tall and wide.

Have you heard that expression before? "It's the berries" was one that my grandmother used. Apparently it was very trendy slang in rural 1920's Illinois. OMG LOL!

It means something that's really nice. I think it's rather charming. After all, few things are nicer than berries. Whether you're putting them in pancakes, eating them with ice cream, or just admiring them in your garden, berries are delightful. Note: Symphoricarpos berries are not edible. Hold on to your ice cream cone and just look at them.

One of the few drawbacks to berries is that they usually aren't obvious to spring garden center customers. So now is the time to remind your readers of how lovely berries and other fall features are in gardens. There are a lot of landscapes out there that look great in spring (when homeowners shop) and fade into nothing in fall. That's too bad, because a fall garden is a real delight.

Another hazard with berries is the the temptation to indulge in bad puns. My younger daughter went through a long Strawberry Shortcake phase; eventually I made her watch the videos in Spanish to preserve my sanity. Seriously, if you're the parent of a toddler, try it. Barbie in French is magnifique.

Proud Berry coral berry from Proven Winners
Native Proud Berry coral berry erupts in a profusion of bright pink berries in late summer and autumn.

Plant of the Week is written by Jane Beggs-Joles.


  1. Not edible for humans, but how about birds and other wild life? If I used branches in a vase, would it be likely to make my cat sick if she nibbles? Toxic, poison or just distasteful? I think it would be pretty near my Black Lace Sambucus, Beauty Bush and Golden Spirit Smoke Tree - kind of a pink corner of the yard.

    1. Hi, Annie. It would look great next to Blank Lace! Birds will eat Symphoricarpos berries, but it appears to not be a first-choice food for them – which is nice because you can enjoy them longer in the landscape. They have a low toxicity, so your cat will have an upset stomach if she nibbled. More detailed information can be found at

    2. Thank you for the reply. It will be hard to wait a year and a half, but I haven't seen a shrub that I fell so instantly in love with for a long time. I might have to have two - or three!

    3. Proud Berry is pretty amazing (you should see it in our trial gardens currently!), but if you can't wait, you could try a variety called Amethyst. Slightly less compact, but same pink fall fruit.

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