Ilex verticillata 'Sparkleberry'Item #0772 USDA Hardiness Zone: 4 - 8
Oval to rounded, deciduous shrub with rich, deep green foliage. Bright red berries appear from late summer to early fall. New foliage growth emerges showy red. Grows best in moist, rich, acidic, well-drained soil, yet tolerant of wet soils as well. Best flower and berry production in full sun. Requires a male pollinator for good fruiting.
- DetailBotanical Pronunciation:EYE-leks ver-ti-si-LAH-tuhPlant type:ShrubDeciduous/evergreen:DeciduousSunset climate zones:1 - 7Growth habit:RoundGrowth rate:SlowAverage landscape size:Slow growing 8 to 10 ft. tall and wide.Special features:Bird Friendly, Deer Resistant, Dramatic Foliage Color, Easy Care, North American Native Selection, Ornamental Berries, Tolerates Road SaltFoliage color:GreenBlooms:SpringFlower color:WhiteGarden styleAsian/ZenDesign IdeasThis beautiful, heavily fruiting Holly shows well in an Asian garden or native bird garden design. Plant as a hedge, in mass in a wild area, or as a single specimen shrub in the back of beds and borders. Great cover for walls, fences, garages and sheds.Companion PlantsPlant with Peony, Japanese Maple, Japanese Silver Grass, Japanese Anemone, Japanese Flowering Quince and Iris for a tranquil, Asian theme. A must for any woodland, bird garden alongside Snowberry, Bunchberry, Cranberrybush and Echinacea.
- CareCare InformationFollow a regular watering schedule during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. Feed with a general purpose fertilizer before new growth begins in spring. For a tidy, neat appearance, shear to shape in winter.Pruning time: winter.Light Needs:Partial to full sunWatering Needs:Needs wet or constantly moist soil.
- History & LoreHistory:I. verticillata is native to the Northeastern U.S. and Southeastern Canada. Sparkleberry is a female selection produced by a controlled cross of I. serrata and I. verticillata in 1961 by William F. Kosar at the National Arboretum in Washington D.C. This cross yielded a plant with the heavy fruiting of the Japanese species serrata, larger fruit size and adaptability to wet soils of the North American species verticillata and the long lasting fruit of both parents. The berries of I. verticillata were used for medicinal purposes by Native Americans, thus derived the common name of Fever Berry.