Ilex cassine - Dahoon holly
Approximately 400 holly species are native to the Americas, Europe and Asia, with
one species in Africa. The dahoon holly is
native to the southeastern U.S.
and south into Mexico
This species is dioecious. Young trees are narrow in profile but the tree
develops a rounder crown with age. Seed-bearing plants have an abundance of
colorful red fruits in winter. Pollen-bearing plants do not set fruit. The
fruits are valuable as wildlife food. The commonest hollies in cultivation in
are hybrids of this species and the American holly, Ilex opaca. They are similar in appearance to the dahoon holly but
are more drought tolerant. Unfortunately, it has become difficult to find
dahoon hollies in north Florida
gardens and nurseries.
See wild plants on the trails by Lake Oneida.
Medium-sized tree to thirty feet tall or more.
Light: full sun
Water: somewhat drought tolerant when established, may benefit from irrigation during a prolonged drought
Soil: very adaptable, no special requirements
Wild plants are found in low or wet sites. Dahoon holly has some drought tolerance but grows best in moist or irrigated gardens.