Ilex latifolia

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 Ilex latifolia subsp. var.  Tarajo Holly
Ilex latifolia2.jpg
Habit: tree
Height: to
Width: to
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Lifespan: perennial
Features: evergreen
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USDA Zones: to
Sunset Zones:
Flower features:
Aquifoliaceae > Ilex latifolia var. , Thunb.

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Ilex latifolia (Tarajo Holly or Tarajo) is a species of holly, native to southern Japan (Shizuoka Prefecture south to Kyūshū) and eastern and southern China (Jiangsu south to Fujian and west to Yunnan), growing in broadleaf forests at altitudes of 200–1,500 m.[1][2][3][4]

Foliage, showing pale underside of leaves, one leaf showing the dark upper side

It is a small to medium-sized evergreen tree growing to 10–20 m tall with a trunk up to 60 cm diameter. The bark is dark brown, with a rough surface. The leaves are alternate, broad lanceolate to ovate-oblong, 8–24 cm long and 4–8 cm broad (among the largest of any species of holly), glossy dark green above, paler below, with a thick, leathery texture and serrated (but not spiny) margins. The flowers are yellowish-green, with a four-lobed corolla, produced in late spring; it is dioecious, with male and female flowers on separate trees. The fruit is a drupe 7 mm diameter, ripening orange-red to dark red in winter, and containing four seeds; they are often produced in dense clusters on the stems.[2][3][5][6][7]

It is cultivated as an ornamental tree.

Ilex latifolia leaves are made into tea in Asia, The fruit and/or seed is used as a coffee substitute.Ilex latifolia also plays a lesser role in the production “Kudingcha Tea”

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Ilex latifolia, Thunb. Tree, sometimes to 60 ft., glabrous: lvs. oval to oblong-lanceolate or- obovate- oblong, acuminate, serrate, glossy green above, 3-7 in. long; petiole about ½ in. long: fr. red, Hm. across, short-stalked, in dense clusters. June. Japan. B.M. 5597. S.I.F. 1:62.—One of the most beautiful hollies.

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 It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article.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




  1. Germplasm Resources Information Network: Ilex latifolia
  2. 2.0 2.1 Yuanlin Flora: Ilex latifolia (in Chinese); google translation
  3. 3.0 3.1 Japan Plants: Ilex latifolia (in Japanese); google translation
  4. Plants for a Future: Ilex latifolia
  5. Japanese Treeflowers: Ilex latifolia
  6. Botanic Japan: Ilex latifolia (in Japanese); google translation
  7. Huxley, A., ed. (1992). New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. Macmillan ISBN 0-333-47494-5.

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