Ilex mucronata (L.) Powell Savolainen & Andrews
Nemopanthus mucronatus (L.) Loes.
Vaccinium mucronatum L.
Mountain Holly, Swamp Holly, Catberry
Mountain holly is native to eastern North America. It prefers habitats that are moist, but drained, and is often found on mountain slopes.
Leaves: Alternate, elliptic to oblong, sometimes wider toward the tip, hairless, 1-2½" (2.5-6.3 cm) long × ¾ that in width. Leaf edges may be smooth or finely serrated, with a sharp tip. Their petioles (stems) are ⅛-¾" (5-20 mm) long.
Flowers: Inconspicuous, whitish to greenish yellow, ⅛" (5 mm) in size, on thin peduncles (stalks) ⅞" (2.5 cm) or more in length. Each flower has 4-5 petals narrow, often bent, petals. Male flowers have yellow-tipped stamens between the petals. Female flowers have shorter sterile stamens and a large green urn-like ovary in the center, with a yellowish stigma atop.
Fruits: Round red drupes ⅛-¼" (6-7 mm) in diameter, with 3-5 pits. The surface is dull, not shiny.
Ilex mucronata at Minnesota Wildflowers
Ilex mucronata on Wikipedia
Ilex mucronata at Ontario Trees & Shrubs
Ilex mucronata on the New England Wildflower Society’s GoBotany site
Ilex mucronata at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Ilex mucronata description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.
Range: Zones 4-6: