The Q&A Archives: Holly Varieties

Question: What is the difference in a Chinese Holly and a Japanese Holly?

Answer: Other than the country of origin, there's very little difference between Chinese and Japanese hollies. Ilex cornuta, Chinese holly, is a bushy, dense, rounded evergreen shrub, hardy to zones 7 or 9, depending upon cultivar. Ilex crenata, Japanese holly, has a more rigid, compact habit and is hardy to zones 5 or 6, again depending upon cultivar. The leaf shape of either can vary, depending upon cultivar.

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