This is a well-known small tree which is widespread throughout the country. It has small white, four-petalled flowers (6-10mm) in clusters from May to July and these are followed in late autumn by the familiar bright scarlet berries. Its evergreen, glossy leaves are stiff and leathery with spiny margins, the upper side being dark green, the lower side a paler green. These leaves – together with those of Ivy – is the larval foodplant of the Holly Blue Butterfly. Holly is a native plant belonging to the family Aquifoliaceae.
I have been aware of Holly for as long as I can remember but only realised it had such a pretty little flower in 2008 at Laragh, Co Wicklow when I photographed it.
If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre