Ilex aquifolium

From - Plant Encyclopedia and Gardening wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
 Ilex aquifolium subsp. var.  Holly, European Holly, Christmas Holly
Habit: tree
Height: to
Width: to
Height: 10 m to 25 m
Width: warning.png"" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. to warning.png"" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.
Lifespan: perennial
Poisonous: yes
Hidden fields, interally pass variables to right place
Minimum Temp: °Fwarning.png"°F" is not a number.
USDA Zones: 3 to 9.5
Sunset Zones:
Flower features:
Aquifoliaceae > Ilex aquifolium var. , L.

Ilex aquifolium (Holly, or European Holly to distinguish it from related species, may also be called Christmass Holly or Mexican Holly) is a species of holly native to western and southern Europe, northwest Africa and southwest Asia.[1][2][3][4]

It is an evergreen tree growing to 10-25 m tall and 40-80 cm (rarely 1 m or more) trunk diameter, with smooth grey bark. The leaves are 5-12 cm long and 2-6 cm broad, variable in shape; on young plants and low branches, with three to five sharp spines on each side, pointing alternately upward and downward; on higher branches of older trees with few or no spines except for the leaf tip, often entire.[3][4]

The flowers are dioecious, white, four-lobed, and pollinated by bees. The fruit is a red drupe 6-10 mm diameter, containing four pits; although mature in late autumn, they are very bitter due to the ilicin content[5], and so are rarely touched by birds until late winter after frost has made them softer and more palatable.

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Ilex aquifolium, Linn. English Holly. Tree, to 40 ft., with short, spreading branches, forming an oblong or pyramidal head, in cult, often shrubby, glabrous: lvs. short-petioled, usually ovate or oblong- ovate, waved and with strong, spiny teeth,- shining, in. long: fr. scarlet, globular, shining. May, June. a. and Cent. Eu., W. Asia, China.—A very variable species. Osmanthus aquifolium, Sieb. & Zucc., an oleaceous shrub, which may readily be known by its opposite lvs., is occasionally supplied by dealers as a variety of Ilex Aquifolium.

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.



Pests and diseases


Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

2. Ilex aquifolium var. alteclarensis, Loud. Lvs. oval, large, thin and rather plain, with numerous teeth. 3. Ilex aquifolium var. hodginsonii, Waterer. Lvs. roundish ovate, dark green, 2 ¾ -3 ¾ in. long, with distant and nearly equal spines. 4. Ilex aquifolium var. latifolia, Loud. Lvs. oval, to 3 ½ in. long, with rather few, divaricate teeth. 5. Ilex aquifolium var. platyphyllos, Goepp. Lvs. broadly ovate, to 3 1/2 in. long, with divaricate spines, thick, deep green. 6. Ilex aquifolium var. princeps, Moore. Lvs. broadly ovate, to 4 ½ in. long, with strong, regular spines, dark green, with prominent veins below. 7. Ilex aquifolium var. wilsonii, Hort. Lvs. oval, with numerous well-developed spines in the same plane, dark green, with distinct veins, up to 5 in. long: fr. large. In this group belong also, Ilex aquifolium var. conspicua, Moore; Ilex aquifolium var. mundyi, Hort.; Ilex aquifolium var. nobilis, Lawson; Ilex aquifolium var. shepherdii, Waterer.—The varieties of this group are probably mostly hybrids between I. aquifolium and I. perado. A geographical variety is 8, Ilex aquifolium var. chinensis, Loies. Lvs. ovate- oblong to oblong-lanceolate, spiny-dentate: fls. smaller. Cent. China.

9. Ilex aquifolium var. handsworthensis, Fisher. Lvs. ovate-lanceolate, with numerous, moderately divaricate spines, projected toward the apex, glossy green. 10. Ilex aquifolium var. hastata, Smith. Lvs. ovate- lanceolate, halbert-shaped; spines large, usually only 2-4 on each side at the base, the upper half usually entire. 11. Ilex aquifolium var. microphylla, Fisher. Lvs. ovate-lanceolate, about 1 in. long, shining green, with small, equal plane spines. A very small-lvd. form, but Ilex aquifolium var. lineata, Waterer, is still smaller, and has the smallest lvs. of all. 12. Ilex aquifolium var. myrtifolia, Waterer. Lvs. ovate-lanceolate, 1-1 ½ in. long, moderately spiny, rarely entire. 13. Ilex aquifolium var. serratifolia, Loud. Lvs. ovate- lanceolate, stiff, with numerous small spiny teeth. 14. Ilex aquifolium var. ferox, Ait. (I. echinata, Mill.). Lvs. of medium size, with strong teeth and numerous small spines on the upper convex surface. A very distinct variety, known as hedgehog holly.

15. Ilex aquifolium var. heterophylla, Ait. Lvs. oval or elliptic- ovate, about 2 ½ in. long, sometimes twisted near the apex, entire or with few spiny teeth. 16. Ilex aquifolium var. laurifolia, Loud. Lvs. ovate to elliptic-lanceolate, 2-3 in. long, usually quite entire. 17. Ilex aquifolium var. marginata, Loud. Lvs. broadly ovate, sometimes twisted near the apex, with thickened entire margin. 18. Ilex aquifolium var. scotica, Hort. Lvs. oval-obovate, blunt and rounded at the apex, rarely pointed, 1 ½ -2 in. long, with thickened, wavy entire margin. 19. Ilex aquifolium var. recurva, Loud. (Ilex aquifolium var. crispa, Lawson; Ilex aquifolium var. tortuosa, Waterer). Lvs. oval and spirally twisted, with revolute margin, entire or with few spines, about 2 in. long: of dense habit. 20. Ilex aquifolium var. camelliaefolia, Fisher (Ilex aquifolium var. magnifica, Hort.; Ilex aquifolium var. laurifolia longifolia, Hort.). Lvs. elliptic or oblong, acuminate, dark olive-green, very glossy, entire or with a few spines near the apex.

21. Ilex aquifolium var. albo-marginata, Loud. (Ilex aquifolium var. argenteo-marginata, Hort.: Ilex aquifolium var. argentea, Hort.). Lvs. broadly ovate, to 2 ½ in. long with numerous irregular spines, dark green, the disk mottled with grayish green, with rather narrow silvery margin. 22. Ilex aquifolium var. albo-picta, Loud. (var. argenteo-medio-picta, Hort.). Lvs. ovate, with divaricate spines, dark green, with a whitish center and a narrow, irregular, silvery margin. 23. Var. aureo-maculata, Hort. Lvs. oblong-oval, 2 ½ in. long, with distant triangular, somewhat divaricate spines, with a large creamy-white blotch in the center, outer part of the margin dark green, inner part mottled pale gray. 24. Var. aureo-regina, Hort. (Ilex aquifolium var. aurea- marginata and Ilex aquifolium var. lalifolia marginata, Hort.). Lvs. broadly ovate, to 3 in. long, with strongly divaricate spines, mottled with gray and green, with a broad, continuous golden yellow margin. 25. Ilex aquifolium var. aureo-picta latifolia, Hort. Lvs. ovate or broadly ovate, 2 in. or more long, with a large, branching, deep yellow blotch in the middle, and with an irregular, deep glossy green margin. 26. Ilex aquifolium var. ferox argentea, Loud. Like Ilex aquifolium var. ferox, but the margin and the surface spines creamy white. 27. Ilex aquifolium var. ferox aurea, Loud., is like the former, but with yellow spines and margin.

28. Ilex aquifolium var. heterophylla aureo-picta, Hort. Lvs. ovate, flat, sometimes with few spines, about 2 ½ in. long, marked in the middle with a broad feathery blotch of bright yellow. 29. Ilex aquifolium var. scotica aurea, Hort. Lvs. obovate, blunt, slightly wavy, about 1 ½ in. long, dark, mottled green, with a broad golden margin: of dwarf habit. 30. Ilex aquifolium var. wateriana, Hort. Lvs. oblong or ovate, with a few spines, or entire and plain and obtuse, about 2 in. long, mottled with gray and yellowish green and edged with a broad, irregular golden band.

There are also some other varieties in cultivation, as 31, Ilex aquifolium var. fructu luteo, Lawson, with yellow, and 32, Ilex aquifolium var. fructu aurantiaco, Paul, with orange berries; 33, Ilex aquifolium var. pendula, Waterer, with pendulous branches; and 34, Ilex aquifolium var. pyramidalis, Hort., with ascending branches, forming a narrow, oblong head.

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.



  1. Flora Europaea: Ilex aquifolium
  2. Med-Checklist: Ilex aquifolium
  3. 3.0 3.1 Rushforth, K. (1999). Trees of Britain and Europe. Collins ISBN 0-00-220013-9.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Flora of NW Europe: Ilex aquifolium
  5. Heinz, A. (1975). Drogenkunde. W. de Gruyter ISBN 313566001X

External links

blog comments powered by Disqus
Personal tools
Bookmark and Share