Quercus ilex – Evergreen Oak, Holm Oak – Fagaceae (Mediterranean and south-western Europe)
Habit: Roundish, large tree, 15-25 m tall, up to 20 m wide, round crown, slow-growing.
Flowers: Dioecious, pendent male catkins, females alone, in pairs or racemes, spring/early summer.
Fruit: Acorns, ovoid-elongated to round, fruit cups with scales, soft hairs and dull, alone or in groups of 2 to 3, bitter.
Leaves: Evergreen, leathery, many shapes, elongated-ovoid to lanceolate, entire, some more or less prickly, shiny dark green on top, dense white to grey tomentose underneath, up to 7 cm long.
Stem: Light to dark grey, shiny, smooth, scaly when old.
Demands: Full sun, sheltered, somewhat frost hardy, cold or temperate house, responds well to cutting.
Natural habitat: Deep, nutritious, alkaline, salt and wind tolerant; well drained soil.
Hardiness: Zone 8a