Sometimes confused with the Holm oak or holly due to its toothed leaf margins, the Kermes Oak is distinguished by the smooth, naked appearance on both sides of its leaves, seen clearly in adult foliage, as well as being a lighter shade of green. Quercus coccifera is so named for the scale insect that attacks the species. A crimson colouring (cochineal) can be extracted from the bug, historically used for clothes dyeing. Kermes oaks often form a dense, prickly thicket that resprouts vigorously after fire. As a haven for numerous fauna species and a useful soil stabiliser, it provides significant ecological value.
Full sun, suits dry, stony ground but adaptable to a range of soil conditions. One of the most drought and coast tolerant oaks.