The American Holly is an evergreen tree with leathery leaves that are spiny along the leaf margin. It has bright red fruit that is easily recognizable.
|Latin Name||Ilex opaca|
|Shape of Leaf||Deep green, 2″to 4″ long with spiny marginal teeth|
|Shape of Flower||Greenish white, Male 3-12 flower clusters, female solitary 2-3 flower clusters|
|Fruit Characteristics||Bright red / orange, 1/4″ to 1/2″ diameter, ripens in fall|
|Bark Characteristics||Thin, gray with warty projections|
The American Holly is most famously known for its use in the construction of Christmas wreaths. The tree itself is typically 15-30 feet tall when cultivated but in the wild, it can reach up to 50 feet tall. It typically has a pyramidal shape and it is native to the Eastern and Central regions of the United States. In addition, the iconic red berry that it produces is popular with many birds. Furthermore, the American Holly is typically planted in groups of 4 to allow for cross-pollination to produce the berries.