Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: American Holly, Dune Holly, Hummock Holly, Scrub Holly
Ilex opaca var. arenicola

Family: Aquifoliaceae (a-kwee-foh-lee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ilex (EYE-leks) (Info)
Species: opaca var. arenicola

Synonym:Ilex arenicola
Synonym:Ilex cumulicola
Synonym:Ilex pygmaea

2 members have or want this plant for trade.


12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring


Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From semi-hardwood cuttings
Direct sow as soon as the ground can be worked
By air layering

Seed Collecting:
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

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to view:

By MotherNature4
Thumbnail #1 of Ilex opaca var. arenicola by MotherNature4

By MotherNature4
Thumbnail #2 of Ilex opaca var. arenicola by MotherNature4

By MotherNature4
Thumbnail #3 of Ilex opaca var. arenicola by MotherNature4

By lilwren
Thumbnail #4 of Ilex opaca var. arenicola by lilwren


2 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive MotherNature4 On Oct 27, 2004, MotherNature4 from Bartow, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

This plant is endemic to the scrubs of northern and central Florida. It is very similar to I. opaca but the leaves tend to grow more upright, curl, have rolled margins and are yellowish green. This is a common adaptation to the scrub by many plants.

Positive NativePlantFan9 On Oct 26, 2004, NativePlantFan9 from Boca Raton, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

A tree or shrub, Scrub Holly grows throughout the middle of Florida from near Duval County and the Georgia/Florida border and Saint Mary's river south to near Lake Okeechobee. It likes dry, sandy areas and the "hummocks" of central and north-central Florida and loves full sun and is suitable for xeriscaping and for attracting some wildlife!


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Sebring, Florida
North Augusta, South Carolina

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