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Ilex opaca

Object Details

Description
The American holly is easily identified by its spiky green leaves and bright red berries - the only native North American holly with these characteristics. Its deeply colored leaves and fruit have made it the choice for “decking the halls" for decades. American and European hollies look very similar, but the American variety has larger and brighter leaves.
Hardiness
-20 - 30 F
Attracts
Host for butterflies
Bloom Time
April to June
Provenance
Uncertain
Range
Central to E. US
Habitat
Rich bottom lands and swamps of coastal plain, 0-915 meters
Topic
Trees
Living Collections
See more items in
Smithsonian Gardens Tree Collection
On Display
Smithsonian Castle
Data Source
Smithsonian Gardens
Accession Number
2011-0385A
Restrictions & Rights
Usage conditions apply
Common Name
American Holly
White Holly
Group
[vascular plants]
Class
Equisetopsida
Subclass
Magnoliidae
Superorder
Asteranae
Order
Aquifoliales
Family
Aquifoliaceae
Genus
Ilex
Species
opaca
Life Form
Evergreen tree
Average Height
Cultivation: 15-30' Wild: 50'
Bark Characteristics
Smooth and gray
Bloom Characteristics
Greenish-white flowers grow in clusters of 3-12 on male plants, while female flowers grow in 1s, 2s, or 3s.
Dioecious
Yes.
Foliage Characteristics
Simple, alternate, dark green leaves with entire and spiny margins. Yellowish green underneath. 1.5-4" long. Leaves not as glossy as other hollies.
Fruit Characteristics
Round, red drupe. Drupe is occasionally orange or yellow. Mature from September to October. Can persist on plant until following spring. .25-.5" diameter.
Structure
Pyramidal
GUID
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ax70a257d7d-3581-4f01-8398-0a6afcf1e0cc
Record ID
ofeo-sg_2011-0385A
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
Photographed by: Hannele Lahti
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