I Love Callicarpa Purple Pearls

Oct 25, 2019 | Gardens

Name: Callicarpa Purple Pearls® aka Callicarpa x ‘NCCX1’ USPP 26,000 aka purple pearls beautyberry.

Type of Plant: This is a beautyberry that is a deciduous shrub. It grows four to five feet tall and wide, and does the best in full sun. Hardy in zones 5-8.

Why I Love/Hate this plant: I’ve always loved purple beautyberry, but many varieties are pretty boring in the landscape until fall. Not so the Purple Pearls! This plant has much to recommend it. The growth habit is more upright than many beautyberry shrubs, and the foliage is purple! So you get foliage color in the garden all season, along with dainty pink flowers much of the summer.

A Word to the Wise: Don’t shear this plant! Place it in the landscape where it can grow its full size without trimming it down, since it’s the natural, vase like shape that shows off the flowers and fall berries the best.

In colder areas this might die to the ground over the winter, but will grow back from the roots in the spring.

Here is how this shrub looked for most of the summer. Purple leaves and sweet, small pink flowers.

In the fall the berries are bright purple. As the leaves drop, the berries show off their brilliant color.


  1. Judith pearsall

    What are the wooden slats that are arranged around many trees for? They are everywhere.

    • CL Fornari

      Judith – those are to protect the bark and trunks of the tree as construction continues in that area. In most of these places the road is being widened, and so there will be heavy machinery working near the trees. The slats protect the trees incase those machines get a bit too close.

  2. Alaina Wray

    Hi C.L,

    Wondering which zones these can be planted? I live in northern ontario,and this is a wonderful plant!

    • CL Fornari

      These are hardy in USDA zone 5…but will die to the ground in that cold. Might die over the winter for you if it goes below -10F.


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