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Ilex aquifolium [eye-lecks ack-wih-foe-lee-um]


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The common or English Holly is easily recognisable for its spine-toothed or spiky leaves which are dark green and glossy in colour. As the trees grow older, the leaves are more likely to be smooth; particularly on the upper parts of trees. The distinctive red berries remain on the tree throughout winter.

Wildlife attraction

Plant Colours


Growing & Care

Its slow growth rate means that pruning is only required once a year. The low maintenance hedging provides a safe haven for birds and animals as well as being a good alternative to the traditional box hedging.

Common Uses

The Holly is fully hardy and can be grown in both full sun and partial shade. It is extremely popular as a topiarised or ornamental shrub and prefers a fertile soil.

Maximum Height & Spread

Height 25m
Spread 20m

Did you Know?

Whilst Holly is commonly used at Christmas, the tree was seen as a fertility symbol, protect from lightning strikes and charm against witches. It is said that the felling of whole trees was said to bring bad luck.