Winterberry Holly (Ilex verticillata)

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Description

This large native holly grows in the form of a small tree, with tiny bright red berries attached directly to the twigs. These berries persist well into winter, creating a dazzling effect against the snow! Winterberry reaches a height of about 7 feet. It thrives in slightly acidic sedge and peat soils at the edges of cattail marshes and in bogs and clearings in wet woods. Seeds may take 2 years to germinate due to the hard seed coat. Male and female flowers are produced on separate plants and pollinated by bees and other insects. Because of this, it is advisable to plant at least a few seedlings to ensure some of each flower sex and production of the berries. Winterberry is a nice addition to naturalization plantings and wet woods.