Ontario Trees & Shrubs website

Winterberry
Ilex verticillata

Other common names: Black Alder, Common Winterberry

Family: Holly Family (Aquifoliaceae)

Distinctive features: Shrub

Similar species:
  •   Mountain Holly (Ilex mucronata)


Flowers: Summer;  White;  7 or more parts (petals)

Leaves: Alternate, Simple, Toothed

Fruit/Seeds: Red berriesthat remain on the plant into winter, hence the name.

Habitat: Wet Areas;  Winterberry is a shrub of swamps and marshes. It likes to have its "feet" wet.

Books: Trees in Canada: 274    Shrubs of Ontario: 283    Newcomb's Wildflower Guide: 396   

Native/Non-native: Native

Status: Common.

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: verticillata: whorled


See Also:
  •   Great Americans: Winterberry, from The Monday Garden, by Sue Sweeney


Photographs: 290 photographs available, of which 5 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

Winterberry leaves and unopened flower buds, in June.

Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

Here's why it's called "Winterberry" - this was taken in the middle of the winter. The berries are still bright red and plump. I don't know if they're edible.

Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

Sometimes the berries dry out, as shown here.

Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

Bark.

Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

And the winter twig.


Range map for Winterberry (Ilex verticillata)

PLEASE NOTE: A coloured Province or State means this species occurs somewhere in that Province/State.
The entire Province/State is coloured, regardless of where in that Province/State it occurs.

(Range map provided courtesy of the USDA website and is displayed here in accordance with their Policies)