This genus contains about 400 species of evergreen or deciduous trees, shrubs and climbers. Used for its foliage and berries since Roman times, Ilex - or Holly as it is commonly known - has long been associated with festivals, including Christmas because of its bright red, round berries.
In the majority of species, male and female flowers usually grow on separate trees, thus plants of both sexes are required for the production of berries. However, some of the new cultivars are self-fertile, such as Ilex burfordii which has white flowers which look stunning against the dark, green glossy foliage and which are followed by bright red berries. This makes a great specimen shrub and is also excellent for hedging.
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Hollies prefer acid soil that is moderately fertile, well drained and humus-rich. Some hollies will grow in part shade, but most require full sun, especially the variegated ones which need the sun to show their two-tone colours to best effect.
Due to the fact that many species have spiny, thorny points on the undulating leaves, the Holly makes an excellent protective hedge. Hollies also respond well to pruning.
A lovely evergreen Holly with deep green foliage that has a purple-blue overtone highlighted by dark purple stems. The small white flowers are followed by red berries if pollination has occurred therefore best planted with Ilex Blue Prince the larger male form.
Ideal for using as a low hedge or screen. Clips well really. Tolerant, hardy and easy to grow. Looks wonderful combined with blue annuals and perennials.
Colour: White Habit: Compact Est. Hgt. 7/10 yrs: 2.5m x 2m
A delightful little Holly that is ideal for hedging and topiary work. Small glossy green leaves and a neat and tidy habit. This female clone has little black berries that follow the insignificant flowers. A worthy substitute for Box. Happy in a sunny position in nice deep soil. Hardy.
Colour: White Habit: Compact Est. Hgt. 7/10 yrs: 1.5m x 1.5m