Chinese holly Aquifoliaceae Ilex
cornuta Lindl. & Paxton symbol: ILCO80
Leaf: Alternate, simple, evergreen, elliptical, 1 1/2 to 3 inches long, margin with varying number of spines, some leaves have only a terminal spine, shiny dark green above, dull green below, glassy feeling.
Flower: Species is dioecious; small, white, 4-petaled, 1/4 to 1/3 inch wide, not showy, male flowers very fragrant, appearing in early spring.
Fruit: Bright red, round drupe, 1/3 to 1/2 inch in diameter, occur in clusters of 4 to 8, very showy, persistent.
Twig: Slender, green turning reddish green in the winter, buds small, leaf scar with 1 bundle scar.
Bark: Smooth, gray, with size becoming very finely flaky.
Form: Small tree that can reach 20 feet in height, with a round crown, often pruned.
Looks like: Foster's holly - American holly - spreading euonymus
Additional Range Information: Ilex cornuta is planted in the USDA hardiness zones shown above and is not known to widely escape cultivaton. See the full-size PDF map.
External Links: USDA Plants Database - Horticulture Information
All material © 2019 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson; Silvics reprinted from Ag Handbook 654; range map source information