Common Winterberry - Ilex verticillata
Common across the East as far west as Minnesota, south to the Florida Panhandle, and north to Newfoundland, this is a small tree or shrub of wet areas and bogs. It is slow growing, with a maximum height of 25 feet and a short, branched trunk. The dark bark is smooth, and the alternate leaves are deciduous, pointed at the tip, toothed, and somewhat hairy, distinguishing it from other hollies. The four flower petals are fringed, with male and female borne on separate trees. The berries persist throughout the winter, providing forage for birds.