Generally, holly (Ilex) species are evergreen, holding onto their shiny green leaves all year. Possumhaw holly (Ilex decidua), however, is a type of holly that loses its leaves every winter. Possumhaw holly can grow to a tree some 20 feet (6 m.) high, but it often is grown as a shorter, clumping shrub. As a shrub or small tree, possumhaws can be useful and ornamental. These small holly trees generally produce a number of thin trunks or stems. They grow in thick clumps that can serve as a screen or hedge. When you are thinking about growing deciduous holly, make sure most of your plants are females. Although they are not very showy in summer, female holly plants are exceptional in fall and winter. Additionally, when you are growing deciduous holly, you’ll find that all of the leaves fall in autumn. It is after that point that the holly’s beautiful berries are clearly visible. They hold their red, orange, or yellow fruit well into the winter unless they are eaten by wild birds.