Ilex crenata ‘Mariesii’

columnar Japanese holly

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

Unlike most other Japanese hollies, which are mounding or spreading shrubs, 'Mariesii' heads straight for the sky, creating a dark green exclamation point in the garden. Crowded on its erect, green-maturing-to-grey stems are tiny, round, glossy, evergreen leaves. At their outward edges they often have three even tinier spines. 'Mariesii' is a female clone from Japan that has been cultivated outside of Japan since about 1880. If pollinated, its flowers develop into black fruits. columnar Japanese holly is the perfect accent plant for setting off shrubs with rounded forms and larger leaves. It makes a strong enough statement to be a focal point, either in the garden or in a container.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: shrub

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 3 ft. 0 in. (0.91 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 1 ft. 0 in. (0.30 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 0 ft. 0 in. (0.00 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 0 ft. 0 in. (0.00 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 8

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun to light or open shade.

Water Requirements: drought tolerant when established

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: gold, bronze

Great Color Partners: dark green, silver

Culture Notes
This Japanese holly is easy to grow in full sun to light or open shade. It will grow best in well-drained soil, but will tolerate sandy sites or clay if the drainage is adequate. It is drought tolerant once established. Light pruning will help it to keep a tight upright form