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The Living Forest (176) : Holly

The Living Forest (176) : Holly

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Mark Billiau.

Premium (World), region Antwerp, Belgium

The Living Forest (176) : Holly

The Holly is a shiny evergreen tree, native to western and southern Europe.
It likes to grow in shady areas of oak and beech forests.
Holly is also widely cultivated as an ornamental garden shrub with several cultivars selected for variation in leaf colour, but this one here is a wild specimen growing in an old forest.

The bright red Holly berries are a very important source of food for birds, during winter when food is scarce.
Those berries are (light) toxic to humans, but are not harmful to birds.

Dutch name : Hulst
German name : Stechpalme
Latin name : Ilex aquifolium

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