Ilex

What is Holly

Holly is an upright evergreen shrub or small tree growing to 15m tall. It has dark green, prickly leaves and small off-white flowers borne in the axils of the leaves. Flowers develop into rounded glistening dark red berries which in Australia appear in autumn.

The berries are eaten by birds which disperse the seeds into bushland. Holly is naturalised in NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia, usually in wet forest where it is a serious threat to native species.

Holly’s a particular problem in cooler climates with reliable rainfall. And, understandably, the prickles on the young growth make removing holly even more of a challenge.

How to Protect your plants

Small plants can be removed manually using appropriate protection against prickles


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