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Possum Haw – Ilex dicidua

Also called Meadow Holly or Swamp Holly. Leaves are obovate, simple, alternating, and deciduous. Drupe fruits are red, shiny, and globose; pulp is bitter; fruits mature in autumn.

Bark is light brown to gray and may be smooth or warty. It is common in the southeastern US. Prefers floodplains and margins of swamps or lakes.

Because of their attractive berries, the tree is used as a winter ornamental plant, and branches are collected for use as Christmas decorations. The wood is not useful commercially because of the tree’s small size.

 

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