Mahonia isn’t the prettiest shrub in the land. Indeed, when I’ve speared my fingers for the umpteenth time on it’s dead leaves, I tend to be even more dismissive of it’s charms.
An easy and effective way to prettify it, is to do as I do and nick an idea from someone else.
At Great Dixter they grow the trickily named Clematis x triternata ‘Rubromarginata’ over mahonia.
It is a generous flowerer, putting on a fine show from July through to now – the end of September.