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Winterberry (Ilex verticillata) holly is a slow-growing, woody, deciduous tree or shrub in the Aquifoliaceae (holly) family native to Eastern North America. It may grow 3 to15 feet tall and 3 to12 feet wide.  The common name refers to the plant’s red berries that mature in the fall, providing winter interest and food for birds and small mammals.

Winterberry holly requires moist, acidic soil with good drainage in deep or partial shade, or full sun. It tolerates heat, drought, and soil compaction. It may abort fruit set in dry soil. It is resistant to deer foraging, fire, and salt. 

Winterberry is low maintenance and makes a nice border or hedge in pond areas, rain gardens, and recreational play areas. It is a good addition to children’s, native, winter, and pollinator gardens and is also popular as a foundation planting. It is a food source for butterflies, pollinators, small mammals, songbirds, and specialized bees. 

  • Deciduous shrubby holly with persistent red berries.
  • Berry has a terminal black dot, not a 'fly'.
  • Leaves are serrated and veins are pubescent underneath.
  • Leaf veins are impressed. 


SKU: SP-Shr-WinterB24
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