Pyracantha are delightful, thorny, evergreen shrubs grown for their attractive displays of glossy autumn berries in fiery shades of oranges, reds and yellows. The berries first appear in late summer, ripen through the autumn and will stay on the plant until early spring if left untouched. The berries are preceded by beautiful clusters of small white, highly fragrant flowers in June which cover the shrub in a snowy white canvas. Hardy and resilient, Pyracantha are similar in many ways to Cotoneaster but with toothed leaves and spiny stems. Pyracantha work well as a free-standing shrub or trained against a wall or fence and are particularly valuable for their ability to intensify a garden’s atmosphere or as a focal feature to draw attention to specific areas of the garden. They are also highly effective as an impenetrable, intruder-proof hedge, offering year-round screening and seasonal interest. For maximum impact, plant a mix of different varieties to create an explosion of different coloured berries in the autumn. Pyracantha succeed in all soils, including chalk and require very little attention, except for pruning back any unwanted shoots after flowering, being careful not to spoil the berry display that will follow. Commonly known as Firethorn, originating from the combination of the Greek works ‘pyr’ meaning fire and ‘akanthos’ meaning thorn.