The ilex or holly family includes some 400 species of flowering plants.Almost all species in this family belong to one genus - Holly.Most of them are evergreen shrubs or trees although there are also some deciduous species.It is believed the ilex family originates in North America and Europe, and today there are such plants on all continents except for Antarctica.
In this country, naturally appears one species of the Ilex family – the Ilex aquifolium L., an evergreen shrub or short tree growing to a height of 10-15 m, with smooth grey green bark. The young branches are bare, with alternate leaves, 5-8 cm long, glossyon top, typically with a spiny toothed or serrated leaf margin, dark green in color. The inconspicuous flower is greenish white, with four petals. The flowers are unisexual, dioecious and spring from the bosoms of previous years’ leaves in 2-4s.The fruits are often called berries though they are dupes in bright red color, fleshy, spherical or egg shaped and some 5-10 mm wide.