General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Water Preferences: Wet
Wet Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Very strongly acid (4.5 – 5.0)
Strongly acid (5.1 – 5.5)
Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 4a -34.4 °C (-30 °F) to -31.7 °C (-25 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 9b
Plant Height: 5 - 8 feet
Plant Spread: 5 - 8 feet
Leaves: Evergreen
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Other: Black "berries" (drupes) on female plants
Fruiting Time: Late summer or early fall
Other: Needs male pollinator for berries
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Blooms on old wood
Flower Color: White
Other: Greenish-white
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Late spring or early summer
Suitable Locations: Bog gardening
Uses: Windbreak or Hedge
Provides winter interest
Erosion control
Will Naturalize
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Deer Resistant
Rabbit Resistant
Flood Resistant
Salt tolerant
Propagation: Seeds: Stratify seeds: moist, cold from fall into early spring
Sow in situ
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Stolons and runners
Pollinators: Bees
Miscellaneous: Tolerates poor soil
Awards and Recognitions: Other: 2001 Georgia Gold Medal Winner

Common names
  • Inkberry
  • Gallberry

  • Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Dec 19, 2017 4:33 PM concerning plant:
    Inkberry is a handsome broadleaf evergreen that in nature grows in the wet, acid, sandy soils along the Atlantic Coast from Long Island down all through Florida and along the Gulf coast to eastern Louisiana, with two spots in eastern Texas in bogs, dunes, bottomlands, and banks along water courses and lakes. It can grow in full sun into full light shade. It does well in heavy clay soils. It is slow growing of less than 1 foot/year and is long-lived. It has shallow, fibrous roots and it is easy to transplant. The female plants bear small black berries that are loved by birds, but holly fruit is toxic to humans. There are number of cultivars that are sold in the nursery trade, and are commonly planted in landscapes in the Mid-Atlantic and the South, and sometimes in the Midwest. This shrub does fine in sandy or silt or clay soils with a pH from 4.5 up to around 7.0. One thing I really like about this plant is that it is soft to touch and easy to work with. The similar Japanese Holly grows very stiff and has short, sharp branches that hurt when in close contact. Most of the cultivars tend to be female plants, but there are some males, and cultivars are selected to grow more compact and less leggy than the mother species.
  • Posted by Mindy03 (Delta KY) on Feb 8, 2012 1:45 PM concerning plant:
    Honey bees get nectar from this plant which produces a dark amber honey.
Plant Events from our members
WebTucker On April 26, 2022 Bloomed
WebTucker On December 20, 2021 Fruit Ripened
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