Texas
Wildbuds

Ilex decidua

(Possumhaw)

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Ilex decidua, Westminster Glen, Austin, Travis Co. 2316

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Ilex decidua, Westminster Glen, Austin, Travis Co. 3326

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Ilex decidua, Westminster Glen, Austin, Travis Co. 3318

Scientific Name Ilex decidua USDA PLANTS Symbol ILDE
Common Name Possumhaw, Possum Haw ITIS Taxonomic Serial No. 27998
Family Aquifoliaceae (Holly) SEINet
Reference
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Description Habitat: Wide variety of soils in moist areas in woods, along sandy stream banks.
Plant: Small, deciduous tree or shrub, 15 to 30 ft. tall, with pale gray, twiggy, horizontal branches. Conspicuous in winter, with its many, small, red berries along leafless, slender, gray twigs. Found in natural environments in central TX and southern states. Commercially available.
Leaves: Glossy oblanceolate to narrowly obovate, 1-1/8 to 2-3/4 inches long, rounded or obtuse at the tip, finely toothed edges.
Inflorescence: Dioecious (male and female blossoms on separate plants). Inconspicuous small white flowers in clusters on peduncles; 4 or 5 petals; yellow stamens on staminate flowers; pistillate flowers with obvious green ovary; photo below shows female flower with ovary a non-functioning stamens.
Fruit: Red or orange-red spherical berries on female trees, up to 1/3-inch in diameter.
Bloom Period: March to May.
References: Wildflower Center, SEINet, and "Manual of the Vascular Plants of Texas" by Correll and Johnston.
BONAP Distribution Map


Map Color Key
Texas Status:
Native

Banner photo of Lupinus ssp. by Rick Capozza, Austin TX

© Tom Lebsack 2023