Colorful Maryland Native Plants

Ilex verticillata ‘Little Goblin Orange’


Ilex verticillata ‘Little Goblin Orange’ is a dwarf cultivar of Ilex verticillata that produces orange berries. The berries provide fall and winter interest. They also are quite attractive to birds. Winterberry is best grown in medium to wet soils and in full sun to part shade. However, it is tolerant of poorly drained soils and swampy conditions. It can be planted in shrub borders or as a low hedge. In addition, ‘Little Goblin Orange’ is a female shrub and will only produce berries if fertilized by a male winterberry. An example of a male winterberry is the ‘Jim Dandy’ variety. One male winterberry will be sufficient for pollinating 6-10 female winterberry plants.

LGS Notes:

Winterberry is a great plant that provides a little color in the winter. It’s great to have a variety of winterberry in your garden with at least one male winterberry plant. In our native plant nursery, we offer a selection of winterberry cultivars. ‘Jim Dandy’ and ‘Southern Gentleman’ are male winterberry plants, and ‘Red Sprite’ and ‘Winter Red’ are female plants. -Jessie

This shorter variety of winterberry allows a residential gardener to utilize winterberry in their landscape beds. We use winterberry in rain gardens and when clients want to support the birds. The flowers provide nectar for butterflies. ~Lauren


Latin Name: Ilex verticillata ‘Little Goblin Orange’
Common Name: Winterberry
Type: Deciduous shrub
Family: Aquifoliaceae
Native Range: Eastern North America
Zone: 3 to 9
Height: 3.00 to 4.00 feet
Spread: 3.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: June to July
Bloom Description: Greenish-white
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Hedge, Rain Garden
Flower: Insignificant
Fruit: Showy
Attracts: Birds
Tolerate: Erosion, Clay Soil, wet soil, air pollution
(Information from Missouri Botanical Garden)