Boone County Arboretum
9190 Camp Ernst Road
Union, Kentucky 41091
Phone: (859) 384-4999
Fax: (859) 384-6888
arboretum@boonecountyky.org

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Cultural Details for Ilex verticillata 'Winter Red'

Common Name:
Winter Red Winterberry Holly; Black Alder; Coralberry; Michigan Holly

Growth Rate:
Slow. Medium growth with adequate fertilizer and water.

Average Mature Height:
9'

Average Mature Width:
8'

Flower Details:
Inconspicuous, greenish to white, FEMALE flowers early through late June, borne single or in pairs or trios on short penduncles, showing 4-7 of each flower part.

Fruit Details:
Berry-like rounded one-seeded fruit, 0.25-0.50" across, borne in dense clusters. Green during growing season, colorful in fall and winter. May persist till spring. Poisonous if eaten by humans.

Fall Color:
Little if any fall color in leaves. Of interest is the bright red fruit.

Bark Details:
Dark gray to dark brown or black on old stems, interesting twist to branches. Smooth with some lenticels.

Disease / Insect Problems or Resistance:
Tar spots, leaf spots, and powdery mildew, none serious

Native Habitat:
Native on edge of woods or in swamps from Novia Scotia to western Ontario, west to Wisconsin, south to Florida, and west to Missouri. Hardy to Zone 4.

Other Features:
The intense color of the fruit is maintained throughout winter, and is beautiful in a snowy setting. Cut stems keep for months indoors if not placed in water.

Culture and Care:
Transplant B & B or as container plant. Adaptable to wet conditions. Prefers moist, acid, high organic soil. Best pollinated by a nearby 'Southern Gentleman', and best fruit production when in sun.

This plant was blooming:

Plantings of this cultivar at Boone County Arboretum:
Bed 185

    The information on this page may have come from one or more of the following sources:
  • Dirr, Michael. Manual of Woody Landscape Plants. Stipes Publishing. 1998.
  • Hightshoe, Gary L. Native Trees, Shrubs, and Vines for Urban and Rural America. John Wiley & Sons. 1988.
  • North Carolina Extension Plant Fact Sheets. www.ces.ncsu.edu
  • University of Connecticut Plant Database. www.hort.uconn.edu