‘Aurea’ is a Japanese barberry cultivar that is noted for its bright yellow foliage. This is a compact, upright, somewhat slow-growing, multi-stemmed, deciduous shrub that typically grows 3-4’ tall and 3-5’ wide. Stems have sharp thorns. Variably sized leaves (up to 1 1/4” long) emerge yellow and generally retain good yellow color throughout the summer when sited in proper locations. If grown in too much shade, however, leaves will turn yellow-green. Tiny, pale yellow flowers (1/2” long) appear from late April to early May in short racemes along the stems. Flowers are somewhat inconspicuous. Glossy, bright red berries form in the fall. Fall color includes orange and red.