Member Price: $39.95
Member Price: $39.95
The Carissa Chinese Holly (Ilex cornuta 'Carissa') is a compact evergreen shrub known for its glossy, dark green leaves and vibrant red berries. Often utilized for its low maintenance and year-round appeal, this plant works well as a foundation plant, low hedge, or accent in the landscape.
Originating from China and Korea, the Carissa Chinese Holly is a slow-growing, dwarf cultivar that typically reaches a height and width of 3 to 4 feet, making it an ideal choice for small gardens or tight spaces. It thrives in USDA hardiness zones 7 to 9, allowing it to grow in various climates. This adaptable plant is not picky about soil types and can grow in clay, loam, and sandy soils, as long as they are well-draining. The Carissa Chinese Holly performs best in full sun to partial shade, with optimal berry production occurring in full sun.
The Carissa Chinese Holly's foliage is one of its most notable features. The evergreen leaves are glossy, dark green, and have a distinctive shape, with one central spine at the tip. The dense, compact growth habit and unique foliage make this plant an attractive option for year-round interest in the garden. In addition, the thick foliage offers excellent coverage for use as a low hedge, border, or ground cover.
While not its primary ornamental feature, the Carissa Chinese Holly does produce small, white flowers in the spring. These flowers are generally inconspicuous and hidden among the foliage. As a dioecious plant, the Carissa Chinese Holly has separate male and female plants, with only the female plants producing the red berries that follow the flowering period. To ensure fruit production, a male pollinator, such as Ilex cornuta 'Burfordii Nana', should be planted nearby.
The Carissa Chinese Holly is highly valued for its production of bright red berries, which appear in the fall and persist through the winter. These berries provide a striking contrast against the dark green foliage, adding a pop of color to the winter landscape. In addition to their ornamental value, the berries also serve as an important food source for birds and other wildlife during the colder months.
Every plant comes with our expert planting guide that will cover the specifics to ensure your plant grows absolutely nuts. It also comes with our free 30 day guarantee so if you aren't happy we got you covered.
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