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Ilex verticillata

Bright red winter berries, pollinator/wildlife benefits, winter color. Multi-stemmed shrub or small, rounded tree to 25', though typically 6-8' tall. This species is used along lake edges, though it will tolerate most upland soils. It is an ornamental plant (gorgeous in winter) in moist landscapes and restorations of bogs, thickets, stream banks and peatlands. it will do well in rain gardens and other landscape designs.

USDA symbol: ILVE

General Information

Plant TypeShrub
Height12 feet
Light ExposurePart Sun, Shade
Soil MoistureMedium
Bloom ColorWhite, Yellow
Winterberry (Winterberry<div><em class="small">Ilex verticillata</em></div>)
Photo credit: United States Department of Agriculture (Click to enlarge)


Flooding / Inundation ToleranceModerate
General Resilience6
Salt ToleranceLow
Stress ToleranceAcidic Conditions, Drought Tolerant, General Disturbance

Pollinator Value: Very High

Bloom MonthsJune to July
Pollinator BenefitInsect Pollinated, Provides Nectar, Supports Generalists

Project Planning

Project TypeRain Garden, Restoration, Sandy or Engineered Soils
Coefficient of Conservatism8
Herbivore SensitivityLow
Rate of SpreadSlow
Soil StabilizationDeep
Vegetative ReproductionClonal


CountyAitkin, Anoka, Benton, Carlton, Cass, Chisago, Cook, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Hennepin, Houston, Isanti, Itasca, Kanabec, Lake, Le Sueur, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Mower, Pine, Ramsey, Rice, Sherburne, St. Louis, Stearns, Todd, Wabasha, Wadena, Washington, Wright
EcoregionDriftless Area, North Central Hardwood Forests, Northern Lakes and Forests, Northern Minnesota Wetlands, Western Cornbelt Plains
Approximate Eco ProvinceEastern Broadleaf Forest, Laurentian Mixed Forest, Prairie Parkland