The Prickly Heath (previously more commonly known as Pernettya) is an eye-catching berry-bearing bush, which produces large berries which appear on the shrub throughout Winter. The leaves and spikes combination makes it appear similar to a small, spreading Berberis.

White flowers appear on the shrub in May and provide a source of nectar for visiting bees. The flowers are followed by berries if a male plant is grown nearby. The berries can either be white, pink, red, or purple.

Gaultheria prefer part or full shade and require acidic soil. They are also able to thrive in exposed locations, though do equally well in sheltered spots.

They tend to spread up to a metre, but can be cut back in Summer if the growth gets out of hand.