Quercus ilex

Quercus ilex, the evergreen oak,[1] holly oak[2] or holm oak, is a large evergreen oak native to the Mediterranean region. It takes its name from holm, an ancient name for holly.[3] It is a member of the Cerris section of the genus,[4] with acorns that mature in a single summer.

The first trees to be grown from acorns in England are still to be found within the stately grounds of Mamhead Park, Devon. From Britton & Brayley The Beauties of England and Wales (1803):

"The woods and plantations of Mamhead are numerous and extensive. Many of them were introduced by Mr Thomas Balle (sic), the last of that family who, on returning from the continent brought with him a quantity of cork, ilex, wainscot, oak; Spanish chestnut, acacia, and other species of exotic trees." [5]
Quercus ilex
Quercus ilex rotundifolia
Quercus ilex, Extremadura, Spain
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fagales
Family: Fagaceae
Genus: Quercus
Subgenus: Quercus subg. Quercus
Section: Quercus sect. Cerris
Species:
Q. ilex
Binomial name
Quercus ilex
Quercus ilex range
Subspecies' distribution: Q. ilex ilex (green), Q. ilex rotundifolia (rose)

Etymology

The resemblance of the foliage to that of the common European holly, Ilex aquifolium, has led to its common and botanic names. The name ilex was originally the classical Latin name for the holm oak, but later adopted as a botanical genus name for the hollies.

Description

An evergreen tree of large size, attaining in favourable places a height of 21–28 m, and developing in open situations a huge head of densely leafy branches as much across, the terminal portions of the branches usually pendulous in old trees. The trunk is sometimes over 6 m in girth. The young shoots are clothed with a close grey felt. The leaves are very variable in shape, most frequently narrowly oval or ovate-lanceolate, 4–8 cm long, 1.2–2.5 cm wide, rounded or broadly tapered at the base, pointed, the margins sometimes entire, sometimes (especially on young trees) more or less remotely toothed. When quite young, both surfaces are clothed with whitish down, which soon falls away entirely from the upper surface leaving it a dark glossy green; on the lower surface it turns grey or tawny, and persists until the fall of the leaf; the petiole is 3–16 mm long. Fruits are produced one to three together on a short downy stalk, ripening the first season; the acorns usually 12–18 mm long in the UK, the cups with appressed, downy scales.[6]

Subspecies

There are two subspecies:

  • Quercus ilex subsp. ilex. Native in the north and east of the species' range, from northern Iberia and France east to Greece. Leaves narrow; acorns 2 cm (0.79 in) long, bitter tasting.
  • Quercus ilex subsp. rotundifolia (syn. Q. rotundifolia, Q. ballota). Native in the southwest of the species' range, in central and southern Iberia (Portugal and Spain) and northwest Africa. Leaves broader; acorns 2.5 cm (0.98 in) long, sweet tasting.
Ghjandi

Mature acorns on a tree in Corsica

Quercus ilex0

Leaves and catkins in spring

Quercus ilex MHNT.2006.0.1268

Quercus ilex, MHNT

Ecology

Holm oak grows in pure stands or mixed forest in the Mediterranean and often at low or moderate elevations. One of the plant associations in which holm oak is found is the holm oak/Atlas cedar forests of the Atlas Mountains. In Morocco, some of these mixed forests are habitat to the endangered primate, Barbary macaque, Macaca sylvanus.[7]

Holm oak is prevalent from Portugal to Greece along the northern Mediterranean coastal belt, and from Morocco to Tunisia along the southern Mediterranean coast.

Holm oak is damaging biodiversity in the United Kingdom and is listed as an alien invader. Normally the tree is unable to withstand severe frost, which would prevent it from spreading north, but with climate change, it has successfully penetrated these areas.[8] The largest population of Holm oak in Northern Europe is present on and around St. Boniface Down on the Isle of Wight and into the neighbouring town of Ventnor, and has shown to tolerate the high winds on the downs. It is thought that this population's propagation (which was established in the late 1800's after being planted by Victorian residents) has been bolstered by native Eurasian jays (Garrulus glandarius), which harvest acorns from oak trees and store them by burying them in the ground where they may then germinate. [9]

Cultivation and uses

The wood is hard and tough, and has been used since ancient times for general construction purposes as pillars, tools, wagons (Hesiod, Works and Days 429), vessels and wine casks. It is also used as firewood and in charcoal manufacture.

The holm oak is one of the top three trees used in the establishment of truffle orchards, or truffières. Truffles grow in an ectomycorrhizal association with the tree's roots.

The acorns, like those of the cork oak, are edible (toasted or as a flour) and are an important food for free-range pigs reared for ibérico ham production. Boiled in water, the acorns can also be used as a medicinal treatment for wound disinfections.

Q. ilex can be clipped to form a tall hedge, and it is suitable for coastal windbreaks, in any well drained soil. It forms a picturesque rounded head, with pendulous low-hanging branches. Its size and solid evergreen character gives it an imposing architectural presence that makes it valuable in many urban and garden settings. While holm oak can be grown in much of maritime northwestern Europe, it is not tolerant of cold continental winters.

Notable trees

The TROBI Champion in Gloucestershire measured 27 14 ft (8.3 m) in circumference at 1.2 m height in 1993. Another tree at Courtown House, Wexford, Ireland, reputedly planted in 1648, measured 20 m in height, with a spread of 43 m in 2010.[10] A specimen in Milo, in Sicily, is reputed to be 700 years old[11] while a small population on the slopes of northern village of Wardija in Malta are said to be between 500 and 1,000 years old. Prior to the Carthaginian period, holm oak was prevalent on the islands.[12]

References

  • BBC News (2008) Holm Oak: Garden Invader
  • Royal Botanic Garden (2008) Flora Europaea: Quercus ilex
  • W.J. Bean (1976) Trees and shrubs hardy in the British Isles 8th ed., revised. John Murray.
  • C. Michael Hogan (2008) Barbary Macaque: Macaca sylvanus, Globaltwitcher.com, ed. N. Strõmberg
  • Holm Oak (2002) [1]
  • K. Rushforth (1999) Trees of Britain and Europe. HarperCollins ISBN 0-00-220013-9.
  • Chênes: Quercus ilex (in French)

Line notes

  1. ^ "BSBI List 2007". Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-01-25. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  2. ^ "Quercus ilex". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 31 January 2016.
  3. ^ Holm Oak, 2002
  4. ^ Manos PS, Doyle JJ, Nixon KC (1999) Phylogeny, biogeography and processes of molecular differentiation in Quercus subgenus Quercus (Fagaceae). Mol Phylogenet Evol 12:333–349.
  5. ^ Britton, J. & Brayley, E. W. (1803). Beauties of England & Wales. Vol. 4, Devon & Cornwall, Devonshire,  p99. Various publishers.
  6. ^ Bean, W. J. (1976) Trees and shrubs hardy in the British Isles 8th ed., revised. John Murray.
  7. ^ C. Michael Hogan, 2008
  8. ^ BBC News, 2008
  9. ^ "The holm oaks of Ventnor Downs". National Trust. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  10. ^ Johnson, O. (2011). Champion Trees, of Britain & Ireland, Kew Publishing, London. ISBN 9781842464526
  11. ^ See the article about the tree
  12. ^ Flora of the Maltese Islands, Hans Christian Weber, Bernd Kendzior, 2006, Margraf Publishers p. 184

External links

Caloptilia leucapennella

Caloptilia leucapennella is a moth of the family Gracillariidae. It is known from all of Europe, except the Balkan Peninsula.

The wingspan is about 13 mm. The typical form of the adult is a pale yellowish white, but there are variations, ranging to the rufous form F. aurantiella. Adults are on wing from July to October and overwinter.The larvae feed on Quercus ilex and Quercus robur. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine starts as a narrow lower-surface epidermal gallery, that widens into an oval, eventually full depth blotch between two side veins. Older larvae live freely, at first in a folded leaf margin, later in a partly rolled leaf tip. They possibly prefer young leaves.

Catocala nymphaea

Catocala nymphaea is a species of moth of the family Erebidae. It was described by Eugenius Johann Christoph Esper in 1787. It is found in southern France, Austria, Albania, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Corsica, Sicily, Crete, North Africa, Anatolia, Afghanistan and Kashmir.

The wingspan is 54–62 millimetres (2.1–2.4 in). Adults are on wing from July to August depending on the location.

The larvae feed on Quercus ilex.

Dehesa

A dehesa is a multifunctional, agrosylvopastoral system (a type of agroforestry) and cultural landscape of southern and central Spain and southern Portugal; in Portugal, it is known as a montado. Its name comes from the Latin 'defensa', (fenced), referring to land that was fenced, and usually destined for pasture. Dehesas may be private or communal property (usually belonging to the municipality). Used primarily for grazing, they produce a variety of products, including non-timber forest products such as wild game, mushrooms, honey, cork, and firewood. They are also used to raise the Spanish fighting bull and the Iberian pig. The main tree component is oaks, usually holm (Quercus ilex) and cork (Quercus suber). Other oaks, including melojo (Quercus pyrenaica) and quejigo (Quercus faginea), may be used to form dehesa, the species depending on geographical location and elevation. Dehesa is an anthropogenic system that provides not only a variety of foods, but also wildlife habitat for endangered species such as the Spanish imperial eagle.By extension, the term can also be used for this style of rangeland management on estates.

Dubrava

Dubrava, Dúbrava, Doubrava, Dubrawa, Dąbrowa, Dabrava or Dubrave is a toponym common in Slavic regions. Terminology is derived from an old Slavic word dub (oak) and it generally means "oak grove", "dub woods". Oak was an important tree in Slavic mythology (and in Illyrian mythology). For example, a medieval Slavic settlement of Dubrava later formed the city of Dubrovnik; the species of oak that grows in that area is Quercus ilex L.

The term can refer to:

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Dubrava, Kalinovik, a villageBulgaria

Dabrava, Blagoevgrad Province, a village

Dabrava, Dobrich Province, a village

Dabrava, Lovech Province, a village

Dabrava, Stara Zagora Province, a villageCroatia

Dubrava, Zagreb, one of the largest neighbourhoods of Zagreb

Dubrava, Zagreb County, a village and a municipality in the Zagreb County

Lake Dubrava in northern Croatia

Dubrava, Dubrovnik-Neretva County, a village on Pelješac

Dubrava, Split-Dalmatia County, a village near Omiš

Dubrava Zabočka, a village near ZabokCzech Republic

Doubrava (Karviná), a village

Doubrava (Aš), a villageMoldova

Dumbrava, TrușeniPoland

Dubrawa, a Polish term and toponymRomania

Dumbrava, Prahova

Dumbrava, VătavaSerbia

Dubrava, Bojnik, a village

Dubrava, Ivanjica, a village

Dubrava (Knić), a village

Dubrava, Kuršumlija, a villageSlovakia

Dúbrava, Liptovský Mikuláš District, a village

Dúbrava, Levoča District, a village

Dúbrava, Snina District, a village

Hronská Dúbrava, Ziar nad Hronom District, a village

Ectoedemia algeriensis

Ectoedemia algeriensis is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is found in Algeria, the Atlas mountains in Morocco and in southern France.

The wingspan is 5-5.6 mm. Adults are on wing in June. There is probably one generation per year.

The larvae feed on Quercus coccifera, Quercus ilex, Quercus ilex rotundifolia and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of a contorted corridor, often following a vein for some distance. The frass is black and leaves narrow clear margins.

Ectoedemia haraldi

Ectoedemia haraldi is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is found in the Mediterranean Region from the Iberian Peninsula and southern France to Greece. It is also found on Corsica and Crete.

The wingspan is 5.8-7.1 mm. Adults are on wing from April to June. There is one generation per year.

The larvae feed on Quercus coccifera, Quercus ilex, Quercus ilex rotundifolia and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of a straight corridor. The frass is black and is concentrated in a broad band that almost entirely fills the corridor.

Ectoedemia heringella

Ectoedemia heringella is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is found in the Mediterranean Region, from southern France, Corsica, Sardinia, and Italy to Cyprus. It was first recorded from Great Britain in 2002.

The wingspan is 4.4–6 mm. Adults are on wing from late April to the end of June. There is one generation per year.

The larvae feed on Quercus alnifolia and Quercus ilex. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of a strongly contorted gallery, almost entirely filled with black frass. There are often many mines in a single leaf.

Ectoedemia ilicis

Ectoedemia ilicis is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is found in the western Mediterranean Region, in southern France and the Iberian Peninsula.

The wingspan is 5.1-7.2 mm. Adults are on wing from March to the end of June. There is one generation per year.

The larvae feed on Quercus coccifera, Quercus ilex, Quercus ilex rotundifolia and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of a rather long, initially quite narrow, strongly contorted, gallery. The frass is concentrated in a broad central line.

Ectoedemia suberis

Ectoedemia suberis is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is found on the Iberian Peninsula, as well as in France, Corsica, Sardinia and North Africa. It has not been recorded from mainland Italy.

The wingspan is 6.4-7.2 mm. Adults are on wing from July to early October, but some specimens from Marbella were taken in June. There is one generation per year.

The larvae feed on Quercus coccifera, Quercus ilex, Quercus ilex rotundifolia and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of a narrow corridor, filled with frass, that widens into a large, oval, upper-surface blotch with frass concentrated in its basal part and along the sides.

Holm

Holm may refer to:

Holm (island), a place-name for islands in areas with Scandinavian influence especially river islets or land bounded by water

Holm Oak or Quercus ilex, a tree. Also found as a placename element in southern England such as Holmbush

Holm (surname)

Morchella palazonii

Morchella palazonii is a species of morel found in Spain.

Morels are edible mushrooms in the family Morchellaceae (Ascomycota). Morchella palazonii was described as new to science in 2015 by Philippe Clowez and colleagues, from collections under holly oak (Quercus ilex) and narrow-leafed ash trees (Fraxinus angustifolia) in Spain.

This edible species is characterised by an elongated cap, a rufescent fruiting body, and small spores.

Nola confusalis

Nola confusalis (least black arches) is a moth of the family Nolidae. It is found in most of Europe, east to eastern Asia and Japan.

The wingspan is 16–18 mm. Adults are on wing from mid April to mid June in one generation in western Europe.

The larvae mainly feed on various deciduous trees and bushes, including Tilia and Quercus ilex. Larvae can be found from June to August. Pupation takes place in a cocoon attached to the host plant. The species overwinters in the pupal stage.

Perisomena caecigena

Perisomena caecigena, the autumn emperor moth, is a moth of the family Saturniidae. The species was first described by Franz Josef Kupido in 1825. It is found in Italy (east of Venice near the Croatian border) and then from south-eastern Austria through Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Albania, the western Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria and Greece to most of Turkey and the Caucasus Mountains of the Republic of Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. There is also an isolated population in the mountains of Lebanon and Israel. Subspecies stroehlei is endemic to the Troodos Mountains of Cyprus.

The wingspan is 62–88 mm for subspecies caecigena and 40–65 mm for males and 48–90 mm for females of subspecies stroehlei. Adults are on wing from late September to early November.

The larvae feed on Quercus species, including Quercus robur, Quercus petrea, Quercus pubescens, Quercus cerris and Quercus ilex, but also Populus alba, Populus nigra, Fraxinus, Pyrus and Prunus. Salix might also be a host plant, since larvae have been reared on Salix caprea in captivity.

Phycita torrenti

Phycita torrenti is a species of snout moth. It is found in Spain and Portugal.The larvae feed on Quercus ilex.

Phyllonorycter suberifoliella

Phyllonorycter suberifoliella is a moth of the family Gracillariidae. It is found from southern France and the Iberian Peninsula to Greece.

There are at least two generations per year.

The larvae feed on Quercus ilex and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. They create a lower-surface tentiform mine.

Purple hairstreak

The purple hairstreak (Neozephyrus quercus) is a butterfly in the family Lycaenidae distributed throughout much of Europe, North Africa, Anatolia, Caucasia, and Transcaucasia.

The larva feeds on Quercus robur, Quercus petraea, Quercus cerris and Quercus ilex.

Sabinene

Sabinene is a natural bicyclic monoterpene with the molecular formula C10H16. It is isolated from the essential oils of a variety of plants including holm oak (Quercus ilex) and Norway spruce (Picea abies). It has a strained ring system with a cyclopentane ring fused to a cyclopropane ring.

Sabinene is one of the chemical compounds that contributes to the spiciness of black pepper and is a major constituent of carrot seed oil. It also occurs in tea tree oil at a low concentration. It is also present in the essential oil obtained from nutmeg, Laurus nobilis, and Clausena anisata.

Stigmella ilicifoliella

Stigmella ilicifoliella is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is widespread in Portugal and Spain. In France, it is known from old specimens along the Atlantic coast near Bordeaux and in the Hérault and the Côte d’Azur near Cannes.

The wingspan is 6-6.6 mm. Adults are on wing from June to early September.

The larvae feed on Quercus ilex, Quercus ilex rotundifolia and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of an irregular, broad corridor with a broad frass line that almost fills the gallery, leaving only a narrow transparent zone at either side. Pupation takes place outside of the mine.

Stigmella suberivora

Stigmella suberivora is a moth of the Nepticulidae family. It is widespread in the western Mediterranean region, where it is found in Portugal, Spain, southern France (along the Atlantic coast northwards to Brittany), Italy, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, the Adriatic coast in Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia. It is also found in North Africa, including Algeria and Tunisia. It is an introduced and established species in southern England. Records of leafmines in Mallorca are probably also this species.

The wingspan is 4.8-7.1 mm. Adults are on wing from April to October.

The larvae feed on Quercus coccifera, Quercus ilex, Quercus ilex rotundifolia and Quercus suber. They mine the leaves of their host plant. The mine consists of an irregular, broad corridor. The frass is concentrated in a broad frass line that almost fills the gallery, leaving only a narrow transparent zone at either side. Pupation takes place outside of the mine.

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.