DECIDUOUS HOLLIES

possumhaw and winterberry

Deciduous Hollies – It’s important to have a male pollinator nearby for good berry production. Any male holly can pollinate any female holly as long as their flowers are open at the same time, so it is critical that you plant the correct pollinator. 


I. decidua aka Possum Haw – Tolerates some shade and fairly damp locations. Produces abundant orange/red berries on female plants. Normally to 20’ tall and 15’ wide but can get to 30’ or more.  

OTHER CULTIVARS

Byer’s Golden – A female selection with golden yellow berries. Grows to 15’ tall and 10’ wide. 

Council Fire – A female selection with orange/red berries. Grows to 15’ tall and 10’ wide. 

Finches Gold – A female selection to 12’ with striking yellow berries. 

Red Escort –  A male selection that gets 12’ tall and 8’ wide. 

Sentry – This female selection has a more upright narrow growth habit. Grows to 20’ tall and 10’ wide. It also drops its leaves earlier than most exposing the beautiful red berries. 

Warren’s Red –  An upright, rounded head female selection with heavy crops of orange/red berries. Grows 15-20’ tall and 15’ wide. 

To insure berries on the female I. decidua varieties above, plant a Red Escort or any male Ilex opaca. 


I. verticillata aka Winterberry – An upright native shrub to small tree, typically to 12’ but can reach 20’. Female plants produce masses of bright red berries all along the stems. 

Berries persist well into winter and are usually eaten by birds by late winter. 

OTHER CULTIVARS

Afterglow – Grows to 6’ x 6’. Leaves turn yellow in the fall, clusters of orange-red berries persist into winter. Plant ‘Jim Dandy’ or ‘Apollo’ (pollinators) nearby for best berry production. 

Apollo – New growth has a slight bronze tint, grows to 12’ tall and wide. This is a male pollinator, it does not produce berries. 

Aurantiaca – A dwarf female to 6’ tall that produces orange/red berries that mature to a more golden orange. 

Berry Heavy (Spravy) – A compact selection chosen for its heavy red berry production and early leaf drop. Grows to 8’ tall and 6’ wide 

Berry Nice (Spriber) – Female cultivar that grows to 8’ tall and wide. Very heavy berry producer and they stay throughout the winter. Use Apollo or Jim Dandy for a 

pollinator. 

Cacapon – This is a female selection chosen for its unusual crinkled foliage and large berries. Grows to 8’ tall and wide. 

Carolina Cardinal – A dwarf female selection chosen for its long lasting berries and compact size to 8’ tall and wide. 

Jim Dandy – This is a dwarf male cultivar growing to around 6’ tall. 

Maryland Beauty - a dwarf form that grows to 5’ tall and wide. 

Pocahontas – Chosen for it’s very large red berries. Grows to 15’ tall and 12’ wide. 

Red Sprite – A slow growing, dwarf female selection to 5’ tall. 

Southern Gentleman – A male selection that grows to 10’ tall and wide. 

Winter Gold – A female selection that grows to 8’ tall and wide but produces masses of peachy/orange berries. 

Winter Red – A female selection that grows to 8’ tall and wide. Very heavy crops of red berries. 


THE HYBRIDS 

Ilex x… 

Bonfire – A selection chosen for its profuse bright red berry production. Grows to 12’ tall and wide. 

Harvest Red – A hybrid between I. verticillata and I. serrata. Produces heavy crops of red berries, grows to 12’ tall and 10’ or more wide. 

Sparkleberry – Another I. verticillata and I. serrata female hybrid released by the National Arboretum. Very large, abundant red berries. Grows to 12’ tall and wide. 

To insure berries on any Ilex verticillata or I. verticillata hybrids above, plant with an Apollo, Jim Dandy or Southern Gentleman holly. 


The male flower is on the left.  Notice the ball {berry to be} in the center of the female flower and a cup in the center of the male flower.

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