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Japanese Holly

Scientific Name: Ilex crenata

Hardiness Zones: 5 to 8 
Height: 8 ft
Spread: 8 ft
Form: rounded 
Type: broad-leaved evergreen shrub 
Annual Growth Rate: less than 12 inches 

Japanese Holly are dense, evergreen shrubs that vary in size depending on cultivar.  In northern regions, the foliage can be injured by cold temperatures, however, some cultivars offer improved cold tolerance. The leaves are rather small and often shiny. Like many other broad- leaved evergreen shrubs, it prefers acid soils and will develop iron deficiency if the pH is too high. Japanese holly can be grown in sun or shade but winter injury in northern climates will be more severe on plants grown in the sun. The plant produces blue fruits but these are not ornamental and largely hidden by the leaves. 

'Beehive' - A compact, flattened globe, with tiny leaves. 

'Bennett's Compacta' - A compact plant with a semi-upright habit reaching a height of 4 feet.

'Compacta' - A slow grower that reaches a height and spread of 4 to 5 feet. 

'Convexa' - A dense and hardy cultivar that can be much wider than it is tall. 

'Glass' - A large, 12-foot tall cultivar suitable for use in hedges. 

'Glory' - A dense, compact, globe-shaped plant. 'Green Luster' - A 2- to 3 foot tall tree with glossy leaves. 

'Helleri' - A very dwarf type that forms a slow-growing mound 2 to 3 feet tall. 

'Hetzii' - A five-foot tall plant with dark green glossy leaves. Wider than it is tall. 

'Highlander' - An open, pyramidal plant reaching a height of about 8 feet. 

'Jersey Pinnacle' - A fast-growing, upright cultivar. 'Northern Beauty' - A dense, twiggy plant reaching a height and spread of about 4 feet. 

'Stokes' - A dense, slow-growing mound with tiny foliage. 

'Twiggy' - A National Arboretum selection that is slow-growing and forms a compact pyramid. 

Provided by Michigan State University Extension