Ilex verticillata – Winterberry (eastern North America)
Habit: Normal shrub, 2-3 m tall and wide; many shoots and like a thicket with upright, extended, slender twigs, 15-30 cm a year; slow-growing.
Flowers: Dioecious, inconspicuous greenish white, hidden under the leaves, end of June to July.
Fruits: Pea-size round berries, plentiful, bright red from end of August usually to end of February, poisonous; males and female have to be planted for fruit.
Leaves: Unlike the other Ilex species, summer-green, elliptical; reddish green, later pale dark green; often with a unique light yellow in autumn, yellow-brown or black-crimson from September.
Roots: Fine, shallow root system; resistant to floods, soil compaction and mechanical injuries.
Demands: Sun to light shade; warm to cool, frost hardy; likes extremely high humidity; wind resistant.
Soil: Moderately dry, favourable in fresh to sometimes flooded soil; very acidic to neutral, avoids chalk; in all moist substrates.
Hardiness: Zone 4