Ilex crenata – Japanese Holly (Japan)
Habit: Normal shrub with varying habit, 2-3 m tall, 1-2 m wide; rarely larger, asymmetrical but usually upright, slow-growing.
Flowers: Inconspicuous, dioecious.
Leaves: Evergreen, small, oval to lanceolate, not thorny, 2-3 cm; lively dark green, like the common box.
Demands: Sun to semi-shade; fewer leaves in the shade; cool, humid areas, avoid heat and drought; usually frost hardy, sensitive to wind in winter.
Soil: On all well drained, moist, slightly acidic to neutral soil; sickly yellow leaves on chalky substrates; fails on heavy soil.
Note: Tolerates cutting very well, can be used for topiary.
Hardiness: Zone 7a