En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
2 ratings

Monday - June 02, 2008

From: Alexandria, VA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Trees
Title: Is Ilex glabra Shamrock a female cultivar
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have an ilex glabra "shamrock". Is it a FEMALE cultivar? I have only found information that the "compacta" and the "nigra" are females. I have a male ilex glabra and was hoping to have berries for the wildlife.Thanks.

ANSWER:

It is not absolutely clear from the information available whether Ilex glabra 'Shamrock' is female or can be either male or female. Missouri Botanical Gardens is somewhat ambiguous about whether 'Shamrock' can be either male or female. On the other hand they do say that 'Compacta' is a female cultivar and the University of Connecticut Horticulture site also says that 'Compacta' is a female cultivar. The University of Ohio Horticulture site also says the 'Nordic' (or 'Chamzin') is a male cultivar. Ohio State University and Floridata both have the same information about 'Compacta' and 'Nordic'. None of these sites designate 'Shamrock' as either male or female, so I suspect that 'Shamrock' could have either male or female flowers. You would have to wait until it blooms to be certain. Duke University has good photos of the male flowers of Ilex glabra. I couldn't find a photograph of female flowers, but you can see a line drawing of both male (right) and female (left) flowers on the USDA Plants Database. Male flowers appear in clusters. Female flowers are single. You do need a female plant in order to get berries so if you want an Ilex glabra (inkberry) with berries, you might look for a 'Compacta' cultivar.


Ilex glabra

Ilex glabra

 

 

More Trees Questions

Tree for wet area in Central Illinois
July 30, 2010 - I live in Central Illinois. When it rains I get a lot of water in my backyard. What kind of tree would be best to plant in this wet area?
view the full question and answer

Life expectancy for Ulmus crassifolia
June 21, 2007 - What is the life expectancy for a cedar elm? We live in Austin, and the tree was likely here before the house, which was built in 1939.
view the full question and answer

Bugs on Arizona Cypress in Bellwood IL
August 27, 2011 - I live in Illinois and have an Arizona Cypress that looks like it is dying but I notice today it has bugs inside its cone. Can you tell me why and what can I do?
view the full question and answer

Oak bark problems from Stillwater OK
May 14, 2012 - In my clients large oak tree there is bark stripped from the limbs in small pieces. No piece is larger than 1 inch by 1 inch and occurs on limbs high in the canopy. It does not look like squirrel doin...
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing, tall taproot tree for El Paso
September 01, 2008 - I live in El Paso Texas and would like to know what would be a good shade tree to plant. I would like this tree to grow fast and tall. I would also like the roots to go straight down.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center