Purple highlights

Beautyberry shrub

As the leaves turn red and yellow this fall, a rare glimpse of purple can be found northeast of Sweeney Hall. Beautyberry shrubs (Callicarpa dichotoma "Issai") are found primarily in southern states. Only six are listed on facilities planning and management's campus plant inventory, and are used as teaching plants. According to the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service, the shrub can grow up to eight feet tall (three to four feet in the north). The purple berries are attractive to birds and animals, and early farmers used crushed leaves as bug repellant for them and their livestock. Photo by Rhonda Martin, FPM landscape architect.