Yaupon holly

Ilex vomitoria

POW - Yaupon

This is a great native evergreen shrub for us that can be used as a screen. It doesn’t need to be hedged, though, so select the variety that fits your space. It only needs gentle pruning to shape if necessary.

In nature it can get very tall, but in our landscape it usually gets 12 to 25 feet. Many nurseries carry dwarf cultivars.

This is a dioecious plant, meaning that there are separate male and female plants. Female plants produce showy flowers, followed by bright red berries in the winter to attract birds. The males do not, so it’s ideal to select your yaupon in late fall or winter to know if it’s a female.

It has small deep evergreen leaves and interesting bark with pale gray and patches of a grayish white. Native Americans used it in a drink.