Saratoga Gold Yaupon Holly

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Botanical Name:  Ilex vomitoria ‘Saratoga Gold’

Common Name:  ‘Saratoga Gold’ Yaupon Holly

Description:  This beautiful native evergreen yaupon reaches a height of 15-20′ tall and 8-10′ wide. Adorned with the most vibrant golden yellow berries, this tree provides a great food source for wildlife. Along with berries for the birds, it is also a great nectar plant for butterflies and bees when it blooms in the spring. Can be kept pruned as a shrub or trained a small tree. Drought tolerant. One rarely has to worry about a male pollinator for this female selection since Ilex vomitoria ‘Schillings’, a heavy flowering male cultivar, is so common in southern landscapes. It grows well in full sun to part shade and is not particular as to soil as long as it is not standing in water.

This plant in 3-gallon containers is 3-4′ tall x 2′ wide.

Fun Fact:  The leaves of Yaupon Hollies have one of the highest caffeine contents of any known plant, and after the Boston tea party when the British cut off the colonists source of tea during and after the Revolution, many Americans got their caffeine “fixes” from tea made from the leaves of this plant. The Native Americans referred to it as the “black drink” and it was used by them as a ceremonial drink, where if one imbibed a large enough quantity of it, they would regurgitate, hence the Latin specific epithet “vomitoria.”

The berries are not edible for humans.

Hardiness Zones 7 – 9



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