Is it Ilex? Red berries on long slender stems

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by wcutler, Dec 31, 2020.

  1. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I am surprised that I haven't posted this, have been looking at it for a while. I've always thought it would be Ilex, but I can't come up with anything that looks like it, and I end up at impossible suggestions in the Flora of China key. I could go back and pull apart some fruits if need be, but it seems pretty distinctive.

    This shrub is stuffed in with several plants growing on the corner of a private property a few blocks from me. The leaves, maybe 8cm long, are slender, lanceolate, stiffer than they look, entire but wiggly margins. I thought that the fruits were hanging single, but I can see the inflorescence structure in the background of the last photo.
    Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_150717.jpg Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_150540.jpg
    Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_150632.jpg Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_151256.jpg Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_151347.jpg
    Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_150653.jpg Ilex-maybe_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_150659.jpg
     
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Has similarities to Elaeagnus although the familiar species are usually noticeably scaly.
     
  3. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Well-Known Member

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  4. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I thought I posted this last night.
    Thank you. I would not have thought of Elaeagnus. Because I never think of Elaeagnus. When I look at everything that comes up on a query, E. umbellata photos look similar, with wiggly leaf margins and round fruits, but the Elaeagnus umbellata in Flora of China @ efloras.org description isn't so convincing in the flower arrangement and papery leaves (which these are not). Most of the Elaeagnus seem to have fruits longer than wide.
     
  5. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Thanks, Georgia Strait, particularly for the page comparing several holly species. I have recently seen Ilex pedunculosa at UBCBG, didn't think it similar. Those leaves are fatter (according to your link, 3x wider), and the stems are thicker, enough so that the fruits are held upright.
     
  6. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Actually my first thought was Pyracantha and I am returning to that today - if you look hard enough at at least two of your shots there are spine tipped spurs which of course rule out Ilex immediately. As far as the fruits go - yes - you should look at their internal morphology for additional hints at identification of the entire plant.
     
  7. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    There IS this Pyracantha right next to it, surrounding it even, but I convinced myself that it was a separate shrub and not rootstock, though I did think the leaf arrangement was similar. You can see some leaves of it in the front of my first photo above. But I see what you mean on the last photo, near the right margin, also on the photo before, the twig in the foreground, but I'm not sure which shrub that belongs to. I'm not finding Pyracantha with acuminate leaf tips and entire margins, though this one that was with it does seem to have pretty much entire margins.
    Pyracantha_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_151127.jpg Pyracantha_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_151136.jpg Pyracantha_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20201231_151203.jpg
     
  8. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Well-Known Member

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    Maybe the private owner still has their landscape plan blueprint — a heritage area like west end would likely need approval stamp fr the city?
     
  9. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I don't think so. There is a lot of guerilla gardening going on also on this intersection, on the city boulevards. But I suppose it's possible the current residents are the owners and have planted it. I could keep my eye out for them.
     
  10. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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  11. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    OK, but when I click on each of the names, the leaves don't look anything like these, at least what Bing shows me. The infructescence does look very similar, though, with the seemingly impossibly thin pedicels and peduncles.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2021
  12. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Well-Known Member

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    RonB - are pyracantha ever grafted?

    If yes - then W might be seeing a bit of a fancy version (first post pix) ... and beside it some root stock?
     
  13. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    I've never heard of these being grafted. However reseeding is possible in local plantings.
     
  14. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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  15. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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  16. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    The variation I referred to above was in the leaf shapes (including those of margins and tips) mentioned in both the generic and specific descriptions on the page I linked to.
     
  17. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Pics in the first post are Stranvaesia davidiana (syn. Photinia davidiana) - the leaf shape and rather sparse fruit clusters are very typical. Second set agree with Pyracantha sp.
     
  18. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Well-Known Member

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    I looked online at photos after reading your reply -

    It is interesting how diff species look similar yet have key differences - and why?
    My simple non academic example would be why does typical ilex Christmas holly have sharp leaves and closely attached red berries

    Yet the original pix show a plant with no thorns and berries on peduncles (new word of day for me)

    ALSO it seems that within a few weeks spring there will be blossoms on this shrub which will help id the subject shrub/tree

    Meanwhile - maybe the owners of heritage house will be at home to solve the question :)
     
  19. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Thanks, Michael. I'm much happier about the leaf shape. Nadia posted some photos of that at
    (2) Photinia? 3AD5 | UBC Botanical Garden Forums
    But, I'm not totally happy about the thickness of the pedicels and particularly the peduncles. AND, what about the spines?
    I went back out in the rain for more photos and to check the spines in my first posting. They are definitely on the twig with the wiggly leaves.
    Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_143552.jpg

    There are very few spines on this shrub. I almost convinced myself that the spines did not start until above this spot where the more normal Pyracantha trunk (do shrubs have trunks?) and the trunk of this one merged (I forgot what that's called - Ron B pointed the phenomenon out to me at a winery in McMinnville when he invited me to join him and his buddies identifying trees on the property).
    Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_144933.jpg

    But that's not the case - I found one twig below that with spines.
    Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_145129.jpg

    I took some measurement photos.
    Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_150942.jpg Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_150957.jpg Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_151020.jpg Not-Ilex_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210101_151108.jpg

    Once a synonym, always a synonym? You did note in the thread at Red Berry Tree, ID? | UBC Botanical Garden Forums that "the lumping of Stranvaesia into Photinia was apparently premature, the two genera are genetically distinct." That thread, in which the plant was ID'd as Stranvaesia davidiana, has some good photos of that.
     
  20. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    A little correction: berries here are on the pedicels, which hang from the peduncles. That applies to inflorescences, which means that the flowers are in some structural arrangement. Where the flowers are single, not in an arrangement, they hang from peduncles. Which always confuses me, but I guess you have to start at the other end - the first stem leading from the branch or twig to the flower is the peduncle. In an inflorescence, there are pedicels after that. So cherry stems are pedicels and plum stems are peduncles.

    Different species in a genus can have different almost everything. Except the DNA. The groupings are based on best guess about similarities in the reproductive organs (and other considerations), until there's DNA evidence that shows up similarities and differences. But within a species, when you're not talking about cultivars that are cloned and therefore supposed to be identical, there can be a lot of variation. There is stuff you can read on what leads to the point where a species gets split into two. It's not clear - you see plenty of disagreements at the genus level and the species level.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2021
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  21. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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  22. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I can't do it. I am not going to be able to figure out if the fruit is a pyrene or a loculed pome. And if the former, in short order I arrive at

    (2) Leaves entire; branches unarmed. (4) (no, branches are armed)
    + Leaves serrate or lobed, rarely entire; branches usually spiny. (they're entire)

    So presumably, the fruit is a loculed pome, which then goes to Pyracantha. Except that it almost looks more like Stranvaesia. Do they hybridize? Or if they merge their trunks, do they share their characteristics below the merge point?
     
  23. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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  24. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Well-Known Member

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    Hello Wendy - do you have a firm ID for your plant ?

    Just curious. Your ID questions & answers from the «unofficial west end botanical garden » are interesting
     
  25. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    No I do not. Spring is coming (well, winter is still to come, but then there will be spring); there will be flowers.
    In the meantime, here is a photo of the leaves of the plant in question next to the Pyracantha leaves, showing what I meant by the leaf arrangement looking kind of similar (to me).
    not-Ilex-and-Pyracantha_CarderoHaro_Cutler_20210107_153448.jpg
     

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