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Ilex opaca

American holly

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Key information

Plant type

Evergreen shrub

Flower colour



Flowers, Fruit



Skill level


photo by Martin Hughes-Jones, copyright GAP Photos (293992)

Plant details

There are more than 400 types of holly from around the world, from small shrubs to large climbers. This species forms a large shrub or small tree with dark green, spiny, leathery leaves characteristic of those of our native holly. In spring, white flowers are produced followed by crimson or occasionally yellow or orange berries in autumn.

Family: Aquifoliaceae

Genus: Ilex

Species: opaca

Plant type: Evergreen shrub

Flower colour: White

Foliage colour: Dark green

Feature: Flowers, Fruit

Sun exposure: Full sun, Partial shade

Soil: Well-drained/light, Clay/heavy, Moist

Hardiness: Hardy

Skill level: Beginner

Height: 1500cm

Spread: 700cm

Time to plant seeds: November to February

Flowering period: April to May

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