Thanks for sharing your expertise. The plants that produce the berries are female plants, so you must plant a male plant nearby for proper pollination. You can plant your winterberry after the soil has thawed in the spring whenever that is in your area. These are pistillate (female) flowers. This is not an easy task. Jill Spencer from United States on December 13, 2017: Lovely plant, lovely hub. You don’t need to purchase your plants in pairs. Generally one male winterberry will be sufficient for pollinating 6-10 female plants. Happy Holidays. Small white flowers line branches in mid-July. Flowers appear on new growth. Look no further than the winterberry bush with its dazzling red berries. The advantage of using the soft growing tips is that they develop roots very easily. This non-fruiting, male winterberry is primarily used as a pollinator. All rights reserved. Winterberry is a dioecious species, meaning female flowers and male flowers grow on separate plants. Ensure at least one male-flowering plant is within 100 feet of female-flowering shrubs. Winterberry grows wild in acidic soils in forested wetlands or along edges of ponds, lakes and marshes. Combination of interplanted male and female forms of the native deciduous Holly, bright green foliage drops shortly after berries appear, get show throughout winter. There are dwarf cultivars available. Thanks for reading and commenting. When purchasing a female plant be sure to purchase the male variety that blooms at the same time. Like its holly cousins, it is dioecious with male and female plants. Once the leaves have fallen, the bright red berries are revealed. 'Stoplight' (also known as 'Hopperton') - This is a newer selection with large, deep red fruit and glossy foliage on a 8' tall plant. These are pistillate (female) flowers. The attractive red berries which are the signature of the winterberries are produced on female varieties such as 'Red Sprite' if a male variety (such as 'Jim Dandy') is planted nearby to provide pollen. To produce berries, a male and female plant need to be in close proximity (100 feet or less). You should check the soil periodically to make sure that it is not drying out. Winterberry is dioecious, meaning there are separate male and female plants. Winterberry is host to the Henry’s Elfin Butterfly (pictured above). Male. Only female plants produce berries, and one or more male plants that bloom at the same time need to be growing within 50 feet of the females if you wish to see those bright berries on your shrubs. Winterberry spreads by suckers and can form colonies. Most often, these shrubs require a male and a female plant to produce berries on the female plants. When can I put it in the ground. It usually grows in damp areas like swamps, thickets and along rivers and ponds. Also, when can I plant them on their own? Allow one male for every three females. They will root in 30 to 90 days. The winterberry is what is known as a dioecious. One will pollinate several females. Dip the cut end into rooting hormone then gently press it into moist soil in a container. There will be no berries on this shrub. ‘Afterglow’ - 6 feet tall by 5 feet wide, orange fruit, compact habit, ‘Aurantiaca’ - 5 feet tall by 5 feet wide, orange fruit, Berry Heavy® - 8 feet tall by 8 feet wide, red fruit, Berry Nice® - 6 feet tall by 6 feet wide, red fruit, ‘Cacapon’ - 5 feet tall by 5 feet wide, red fruit, First Editions® Wildfire™ - 7 feet tall by 8 feet wide, red fruit, ‘Goldfinch’ - 4 feet tall by 4 feet wide, golden yellow fruit, ‘Red Sprite’- 4 feet tall by 4 feet wide, red fruit, compact habit, ‘Sparkleberry’ - 12 feet tall by 12 feet wide, red fruit, Winter Red® - 9 feet tall by 8 feet wide, red fruit, Plant with 'Afterglow', 'Aurantiaca', Berry Heavy®, Berry Nice®, 'Cacapon', First Editions® Wildfire™, 'Goldfinch', and 'Red Sparkler', ‘Southern Gentleman’ - 9 feet tall by 8 feet wide, Plant with 'Sparkleberry' and Winter Red®, Beth Berlin, former Extension educator; Kathy Zuzek, former Extension educator; and Julie Weisenhorn, Extension educator. But Winterberry Holly is unlike it's evergreen cousins. Flowers appear on new growth. Female plants produce bright red berries in profusion in early fall while leaves are still green and remain until mid-winter. Caren White (author) on December 13, 2017: You're welcome! Sold. 'Jim Dandy' is a male plant and is generally grown only as a pollinator for certain female winterberry cultivars (e.g., I. verticillata 'Red Sprite'). It is adaptable to other soils as long as they are acidic and moist. Winterberry shrubs are dioecious, meaning individual plants are either male, or female. Answer: The berries will be bright red when they are ripe. NOTE: Both male and female plants are necessary to produce berries. There is no precise answer regarding the maximum pollination distance between male and female winterberry plants, but we should be able to agree on a general range. The plants that produce the berries are female plants, so you must plant a male plant nearby for proper pollination. It's been a mild winter. 'Jim Dandy' is a male plant and is generally grown only as a pollinator for certain female winterberry cultivars (e.g., I. verticillata 'Red Sprite'). Wake Co., NC 5/30/2011. Their color is even more pronounced with a snowy white backdrop. The numbers of flower part is variable. One male plant will be sufficient in pollinating 6-10 female plants. But Winterberry Holly is unlike it's evergreen cousins. To make sure you get berries, we're sending you both. You can also propagate winterberry from softwood cuttings. Each blossom has a green ovule in the center. Thanks for reading and commenting. They can be grown from seed. Only fertilized female flowers will produce the attractive red berries that are the signature of the species. The leaves are dark green turning to yellow in the fall. May be pruned shorter. Make a cutting that is 6 - 8 inches long. Softwood cuttings are cuttings made in the spring or early summer when the plants are actively growing. These are also native to North America. A plant that is near and dear to our hearts here at Winterberry, ... both male and female. Winterberry Holly. This plant is deciduous and native in many parts of the U.S. and Canada. – Winterberry. The Southern Gentleman Holly is a tall male winterberry that is used to pollinate female winterberry plants. The flowers appear either singly or in small clusters along the stems. Amend the soil with compost or peat moss to hold moisture and add sulfur if your soil is alkaline. Winterberry is dioecious, so both male and female plants are needed for fruit production. It is sometimes also marketed as "Dwarf Male." The berries remain on the plant for several weeks to months through winter, as the birds tend not to be interested in them until they have softened considerably. One of the best plants for fall and winter color. Plant the male shrub in the back of the planting bed or nestled in the centre of a cluster of female plants that mask and overshadow the mundane male plant in fall and winter. Once you have determined which sex you have, you can go to your local nursery and by the opposite sex bush so that you will have berries next year. Winterberry is a dioecious species, meaning female flowers and male flowers grow on separate plants. Visit What's wrong with my plant? Smooth green leaves are entire rather than notched in the typical holly fashion. Winterberry is dioecious, meaning that male and female flowers are borne on separate plants. I located bushes to cut but I'm unsure if they're male or female. Winterberry is a host for the Henry’s Elfin butterfly (pictured above), and plays an important role for an interesting native bee called Colletes banksi, which makes a cellophane-like covering over their stored food to protect it for their larva. They also used the bark to treat cuts and bruises. Cuttings take from 30 to 90 days to start growing roots. The plastic cover keeps in the moisture, preventing the soil from drying out. They will grow in partial shade but produce more berries when grown in full sun. This male variety is required for berry production on the females. Natives are adapted to our growing conditions and provide a valuable source of food and shelter for the wildlife in our yards. Prune to shape in early spring just before new growth appears. Grows with an upright-rounded habit up to 6-10 ft. tall and wide (180-300 cm). The shrubs are deciduous, shedding their leaves in the fall. Winterberry is a native deciduous shrub and requires a male and female plant for pollination. Ilex verticillata . 2020 'Southern Gentlemen' - This plant is a late-blooming male pollinator for 'Winter Red', 'Winter Gold', 'Capapon', 'Shaver', 'Sparkleberry' and other later blooming female clones. Have your soil tested by the U of M Soil Testing Lab, Adaptable to many soil types - sandy, loam, or clay, Tolerates poorly-drained and compacted soils, Leaves may turn yellow when planted in soil pH is higher than 6.5, Leaf spots and powdery mildew late in the season; these are only cosmetic and non-fatal. That includes not just the usual songbirds but also waterfowl and gamebirds. Question: Can I purchase female and male winterberry seeds? The perfect sized plant for residential landscapes. Person Co., NC 6/10/2009. If they are not eaten by wildlife, they will stay on the branches for most of the winter providing color to your yard during a season with little color. Only fertilized female flowers will produce berries. Thankfully, via the hard work of bees, one male can pollinate up to ten females. Winterberry is known by many different names such as Black Alder, Brook Alder, False Alder, Canada Holly and Fever Bush. That's why it's advised that the male and females be no more than 50 feet apart from each other. Person Co., NC 6/10/2009. The flowers appear either singly or in small clusters along the stems. One of the best plants for fall and winter color. For the best chance of pollination, site male plants no more than 50 to 100 feet away from the female winterberry shrubs. Therefore, it is oftentimes up to you to determine the difference. Unlike its holly cousins, it is deciduous, losing its leaves in the fall. Very few reputable seed sellers sell winterberry seeds. Also, there are specific pollinators per female variety. Winterberries are dioecious (separate male and female plants). Winterberry provides seasonal interest in autumn and early winter when female plants are covered in red, orange or yellow fruit. Wait to take your cuttings until after your last frost and the shrubs are actively growing. not rated $ 19.95 Add to cart. Both male and female plants produce flowers, but only fertilized flowers on female winterberry shrubs produce berries. Winterberry is dioecious, so both male and female plants are needed for fruit production. If not, you can tell them apart when they bloom in the summer. The berries remain on the plant for several weeks to months through winter, as the birds tend not to be interested in them until they have softened considerably. Winterberry is a shrub that is related to holly. It is nearly impossible to distinguish the male and female holly bush prior to blooming. Right now, they are dormant and won't root. Therefore, for the best berry display, plant male and female plants together. Therefore, for the best berry display, plant male and female plants together. Pruning is not an essential part of caring for winterberry holly shrubs. The cuttings should be made from the soft, growing tips of the branches before they have hardened into stiff, woody branches which happens later in the season. All flowers are about ¼ inch across with 5 to 8 white petals that are spreading to reflexed. Zone: 4-9 Height: 3-4 Feet Spread: 3-4 Feet. Plant several shrubs in a mass for wildlife food and habitat, or as a group of plants in the landscape. One will pollinate several females. If the flowers are numerous and small, you have males. They should be labelled at the nursery. – Winterberry for a list of the most common winterberry pests in Minnesota. Male and female flowers are usually borne on separate plants (dioecious), occasionally on the same plant (monoecious), and rarely a plant will produce perfect flowers (both male and female parts). But it will also grow just fine in regular soil. The cold in the refrigerator mimics the cold weather that the seeds would experience outdoors. Flowers on male winterberries appear in large clusters with several prominent yellow anthers protruding from the center of each blossom. There will be no berries on this shrub. Unlike its holly cousins, it is deciduous, losing its leaves in the fall. Leaf spots and powdery mildew occasionally occur. Winterberry is a dioecious plant, which means there are separate male and female plants. The paper towel method will work but the roots may be damaged when you transplant into soil. The attractive red berries which are the signature of the winterberries are produced on female varieties such as 'Winter Red', if a male variety is nearby to provide pollen. Ah, nature. Prune to shape in early spring just before new growth appears. These flowers are known as staminate flowers. Since the roots support the foliage, no new growth will appear until the damaged/destroyed roots have been replaced. Its slender branches are draped with small but plentiful berries from base to tip. Thanks for reading and commenting and Happy Holidays to you too! Also great for birds and wildlife in the colder months once berries have ripened. Male winterberry plants produce no berries, however, and are often grown only to pollinate female plants. You will know that your cutting has roots when new leaves appear. Most gardeners who want to propagate these shrubs from seed either gather the seed from their own shrubs or get permission from another gardener who is growing winterberry to harvest seeds from those shrubs. When purchasing a female plant be sure to purchase the male variety that blooms at the same time. To make sure you get berries, we're sending you both. The easiest way to do that is to plant the seeds 1/8 inch deep in a container with moistened soi. Male and female flowers are usually borne on separate plants (dioecious), occasionally on the same plant (monoecious), and rarely a plant will produce perfect flowers (both male and female parts). The winterberry is what is known as a dioecious. A plant that is near and dear to our hearts here at Winterberry, ... both male and female. Only female shrubs can bear the decorative fruits that also provide food to famished songbirds. Once they have rooted, you can transplant them outdoors. It is adaptable to other soils as long as they are acidic and moist. Although winterberry will tolerate some dryness, it grows best with regular moisture and can tolerate wet spots where most plants won’t grow. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. Will also pollinate Red Sprite female, which we’ve offered other years. Pistillate flowers. The male must be the same species as the female and bloom at the same time. Wake Co., NC 5/30/2011. In the case of winterberry, it refers to two different types of plants being needed for fruit production. All you need is one Southern Gentleman Holly bush for every 5 to 10 female plants if you want a spectacular crop of beautiful berries. Use in groupings or masses for maximum effect. Just make sure that the bloom time of the male and female match up. But it’s not just the berries that will attract wildlife. 1. Because winterberry plants are bee pollinated, generally one male plant is recommended for every four to five female plants (if plants are relatively far apart). The Southern Gentleman Holly is a tall male winterberry that is used to pollinate female winterberry plants. Answer: Yes, winterberry has male and female plants. At a time of year when landscapes are looking bleak in colder climates, the bright red berries produced by Winterberries come to the rescue. Caren White is a Master Gardener and instructor at Home Gardeners School. The seed needs moist, cold stratification. Or, if you'd like to create a carefree hedgerow that's beautiful year-round, select our Winterberry Hedge, with three female plants and one male for pollination. Plant the male shrub in the back of the planting bed or nestled in the centre of a cluster of female plants that mask and overshadow the mundane male plant in fall and winter. It is native to the Northeastern US where it grows in marshy areas. For the best chance of pollination, site male plants no more than 50 to 100 feet away from the female winterberry shrubs. Certain varieties of Winterberries are considered male, while others are female. Although it is often found growing in wetlands, it does just as well if not better in well drained garden soils found around most homes. If properly pollinated the female plant will give way to a crop of bright red berries, 1/4″ in diameter in late summer to fall. Generally one male winterberry will be sufficient for pollinating 6-10 female plants. The fruits appear in September and persist until March/April if the birds haven’t already cleaned the plant bare. The perfect sized plant for residential landscapes. Winterberry Holly - Ilex verticillata - these produce a lot of berries in the winter. The male plant produces small, white pollen producing flowers. Its slender branches are draped with small but plentiful berries from base to tip. Once the leaves have fallen, the bright red berries are revealed. Usually if they are planted within 40 feet of each other they will do just find. I plan to grow from cuttings. Roots have been damaged or destroyed. It earned that last name thanks to the Native Americans who used the berries for medicinal purposes. Question: I planted a Winterberry years ago next to an oak tree. It gets its name from the Christmas-red berries that develop from fertilized flowers and stay on the bare bush stems much of the winter. Looking for a way to jazz up your landscape during the winter? They need a period of cold stratification to mimic winter weather before they will germinate. Will this paper towel method also work, or do the seeds need to be in soil? Be aware that you need to select the appropriate male cultivar whose flowering period coincides with the f… Winterberry is a dioecious plant, which means there are separate male and female plants. Once you see that the shrubs from which you want to take cuttings have leaves and new shoots, you can take your cuttings. This plant is deciduous and native in many parts of the U.S. and Canada. Leaf undersides are white-hairy. Winterberry shrubs are perfect for a wildlife friendly yard. Although some plants may be tagged with their particular sex, this is rarely the case. Generally one male winterberry will be sufficient for pollinating 6-10 female plants. If you know that you have a female shrub, you will need a male to pollinate it so that the female will produce berries. It doesn't act like a holly. Viburnum, Blue Muffin™ A new compact selection of Arrowwood Viburnum! Clusters of small, white flowers in early to mid-summer, Red, orange, or yellow fruit in fall and winter, Soil pH 4.5 to 6.5 (acidic). Ilex verticillata, the winterberry, is a species of holly native to eastern North America in the United States and southeast Canada, from Newfoundland west to Ontario and Minnesota, and south to Alabama.. Other names that have been used include black alder, Canada holly, coralberry, fever bush, Michigan holly, or winterberry holly.. Fire Risk: This plant has a low flammability rating. Ilex verticillata Winterberry Combo. Male hollies will never develop berries, so they aren’t very showy. Caren White (author) on December 12, 2017: It's probably a matter of local taste in landscaping whether or not winterberry are commonly seen. Plant the male within 50 feet of the female plants. Winterberry Holly. Although some plants may be tagged with their particular sex, this is rarely the case. Winterberry is a host for the Henry’s Elfin butterfly (pictured above), and plays an important role for an interesting native bee called Colletes banksi, which makes a cellophane-like covering over their stored food to protect it for their larva. This one has 7-8 stamens and 7-8 petals on each flower. Plant one male for every three to five females. 'Southern Gentlemen' - This plant is a late-blooming male pollinator for 'Winter Red', 'Winter Gold', 'Capapon', 'Shaver', 'Sparkleberry' and other later blooming female clones. Although it is often found growing in wetlands, it does just as well if not better in well drained garden soils found around most homes. Southern Gentleman Holly: Southern Gentleman Holly is the pollinator of choice for Sparkleberry Holly. Jim Dandy "Jim Dandy" is a male-flowering winterberry that is needed to pollinate other early-spring blooming female winterberry plants. May be pruned shorter. Make sure that they are a trusted source for seeds before you purchase from them. Also great for birds and wildlife in the colder months once berries have ripened. Winterberries are flowering now, though the early flowering selections have mostly finished flowering and the late flowering selections are just beginning. Only the female Winterberries will produce berries and they need a male Winterberry nearby to do so. Person Co., NC 6/10/2009. Winterberry holly (Ilex verticillata) looks for all the world as if it's trying to divorce itself from the holly tribe to which it belongs. Place the container on a sunny windowsill. I put the seeds in a wet paper towel inside of a plastic bag into the refrigerator. This male variety is required for berry production on the females. 'Stoplight' (also known as 'Hopperton') - This is a newer selection with large, deep red fruit and glossy foliage on a 8' tall plant. This is not an easy task. Left a large portion of the oak tree, and the vine in the last year has flourished. The holly plant is an example of a dioecious plant—one in which the male and female reproductive systems occur on separate plants. The male shrub will have small flowers in clusters while the female shrub’s flowers will be more conspicuous and fewer in number. All flowers are about ¼ inch across with 5 to 8 white petals that are spreading to reflexed. Caren White (author) on January 26, 2020: Caroline, I don't know where you live or your growing zone so I can only give you a general answer. Allow one male for every three females. Small white flowers line branches in mid-July. Naturalists have counted 49 different species of birds that eat the berries. It can be used as a property border or to screen views. In the case of winterberry, it refers to two different types of plants being needed for fruit production. ‘Jim Dandy’ Winterberry Ilex verticillata 3-6' x 4-5' Male selection to pollinate Afterglow. One male winterberry plant produces adequate pollen for up to 10 female plants. One male can service several females. Because winterberry plants are bee pollinated, generally one male plant is recommended for every four to five female plants (if plants are relatively far apart). Plant both a male and female shrub, as the female develops bright red berries only if a male is within about 50 feet. The flowers are relatively inconspicuous green-white in color and appear on new growth. The charts below show the co-pollinators for Winterberry, including some older varieties that you may have in your garden and want to pair, and pollination timing for some more popular varieties. The term “small mammals” includes mice as well as larger animals like raccoons. That's what "transplant shock" is. If you are concerned about deer kill of your winterberries then plant a higher ratio of female to male winterberries in your yard. Winterberry is a native plant that will add a splash of color to your winter landscape as well as provide a welcome buffet for wildlife. Flowers appear on new growth. ‘Jim Dandy’ Winterberry Ilex verticillata 3-6' x 4-5' Male selection to pollinate Afterglow. Although they are poisonous to humans, dogs, cats and horses, birds and other small mammals love them. Needless to say, it never grew very much, but once the oak had to be removed, it took off as it was in the sun. Sold. The male shrub will have small flowers in clusters while the female shrub’s flowers will be more conspicuous and fewer in number. Only female shrubs can bear the decorative fruits that also provide food to famished songbirds. The leaves do fall off in the winter, leaving a show of just the berries in the winter against the background of snow. To ensure color, a male pollinator should be planted near a female winterberry. Or, if you'd like to create a carefree hedgerow that's beautiful year-round, select our Winterberry Hedge, with three female plants and one male for pollination. Anyway, thanks for sharing another informative hub about some lovely plants! Every time you transplant a plant, you risk damaging the roots. These diagnostic tools will guide you step-by-step through diagnosing a plant problem or identifying a weed or insect. Answer: Oh dear, it sounds like you have all female or all male bushes. Winterberry (Ilex verticillata) comes as either a male or female plant. Certain varieties of Winterberries are considered male, while others are female. To ensure bountiful fruiting, High Line Gardeners have planted Ilex verticillata 'Jim Dandy’ in close … I think it's interesting that they're poisonous to humans, dogs, etc., but not to birds. * The male and female plants must bloom at precisely the same time for the female to be receptive. Answer: An easy way to tell if a winterberry shrub is male or female during the winter is to look for berries. The numbers of flower part is variable. Ilex verticillata are dioecious (translated as "two houses"), meaning there are distinctly separate male and female plants. This one has 7-8 stamens and 7-8 petals on each flower. To produce the colorful berries, you will need a male and a female plant. Winterberry spreads by suckers and can form colonies. The word dioecious comes from the Greek word for two households. One male plant will pollinate about 20 female plants to produce fruit when planted within 40 feet of each other. Plants with no roots cannot grow new leaves. Generally, one male winterberry can pollenize up to ten female plants. If they are large and fewer in number, you have females. The flowers are relatively inconspicuous green-white in color and appear on new growth. Remove the leaves from the bottom half of the cutting. If you aren't sure, the difference is in the flowers. (Ilex verticillata) is a native Minnesota shrub grown for its colorful and abundant fruit. A full sun to part shade lover, this plant is easily grown in average, medium to wet, well-drained, acidic soils. Male. To encourage fruit production, plant at least one male bush for every four female plants. To get berries on a female plant, a male plant must be near. Male and female holly flowers grow on different plants. ‘Jim Dandy’ and ‘Southern Gentleman’ are male plants that pollinate the female winterberry. Female plants produce bright red berries in profusion in early fall while leaves are still green and remain until mid-winter. not rated $ 19.95 Add to cart. If they are not eaten by wildlife, they will stay on the branches for most of the winter providing color to your yard during a season with little color. Answer: No, the flowers have little to no fragrance. University of Minnesota Extension discovers science-based solutions, delivers practical education, and engages Minnesotans to build a better future. Fortunately, you only need to plant one to pollinate up to five female plants. NOTE: Both male and female plants … Beyond 40 feet, one male will pollinate about four to five female plants. Prune to shape in early spring just before new growth appears. Generally, a single male shrub can pollinate 6 to 10 female shrubs. Question: Why are there are no berries on my Winterberry bushes? Because only fertilized female plants will produce a wonderful display of berries, it is crucial that there be at least one male winterberry plant in the area to allow for cross-pollination. Upright-Rounded habit up to ten females famished songbirds ( pictured above ) notes on how grow. Range in Height from 5 to 8 white petals that are the of! 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Names such as rain gardens and hedges get berries, you will know that your cutting has roots new... To purchase your plants in pairs male-flowering winterberry that is near and dear to our hearts here at winterberry it. Winterberry seeds for sale, check out the seller very carefully Minnesotans to build a better.. In acidic soils in forested wetlands or along edges of ponds, lakes and.! Via the hard work of bees, one male winterberry nearby to do..