Ilex ambigua

Photo by Shirley Denton. Photograph belongs to the photographer who allows use for FNPS purposes only. Please contact the photographer for all other uses.

Natural Range in Florida
USDA Zones

Suitable to grow in:
10A 8A 8B 9A 9B 

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Carolina Holly, Sand Holly


Plant Specifics

Size:to 15 ft
Life Span:Long-lived perennial
Flower Color:White
Fruit Color:Red
Phenology:Deciduous. Blooms in spring. Fruits ripen in late summer and persist into winter.
Habitats:Dry hammocks, sandhills, scrub, dunes.


Recommended Uses:Plant as a small understory tree. Good as a general background plant that is appropriate to wildlife.
Light: Part Shade
Moisture Tolerance:
always floodedextremely dry
Moisture Tolerance: Not wet but not extremely dry ----- to ----- Very long very dry periods
Salt Water Flooding Tolerance:Not salt tolerant of inundation by salty or brackish water.
Salt Spray Tolerance:Low/no tolerance of salty wind or direct salt spray



Fruits are eaten by birds and small mammals.

Bees pollinate flowers.