Compact Japanese Holly Overview
Compact Japanese Holly Overview
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Compact Japanese Holly

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Compact Japanese Holly with Year-Round Interest

  • Ornamental Evergreen
  • Low Maintenance
  • Considered Allergy Free
  • Urban Tolerant
  • Resistant to Pests and Diseases

Compacta Holly, also known as Compact Japanese Holly (Ilex crenata 'Compacta') is a popular ornamental shrub. With its small glossy rounded leaves, it is one of the best substitutes for Boxwood in the milder climates, in fact they are often mistaken for Boxwood.

The Compact Japanese Holly is well known for its very low maintenance nature, and that's a good thing.

You'll love how the glossy, dark green foliage persists all year around, and the way it maintains that rich green foliage color. It is widely used as a foundation plant for that very reason. It looks crisp and clean.

New growth emerges bright green in the spring. The slightly scalloped edges of the leaves present an additional decorative appearance compared to other common evergreens.

Compact Japanese Holly has an upright habit with an oval shape and well-branched, compact form. Japanese Holly has a naturally beautiful form but is amenable to pruning if you so desire.

The Compact Japanese Holly is a female selection and must have a male selection nearby to produce a petite, black fruit in fall. The fruit is inconspicuous but hangs on into winter. You may see insignificant white flowers and tiny black berries if you've planted 3 or more together.

The low maintenance Compact Japanese Holly is a first choice for adding a clean formal look to landscape. Order today!

How to Use Compact Japanese Holly in the Landscape

This is a lovely evergreen shrub with pretty round green leaves, typically planted on the foundations of homes. The plant can be pruned aggressively to be maintained at any height and grows well in full sun to part shade.

These shrubs create perfect round balls that can be pruned for size as needed. It can even be formed into particular shapes, so is popular as a topiary specimen.

Give them enough room to grow to their mature height and spread. They'll look their best when allowed to grow naturally.

You do want to keep them protected from winter winds. They are able to truly shine when planted along walls or homes.

Plant several for a lovely, low hedge under the front windows, or use one as an elegant accent at the corner of your house. No matter how you use Compact Japanese Holly, it creates a magnificent backdrop for bright perennials and annuals.

#ProPlantTips for Care

Compact Japanese Holly has a slow growth rate of less than 6 inches a year. It can take some partial shade but will grow happily in full sun as well.

To establish the best root system, when planting, gently pluck the roots out a bit before planting to encourage the roots to grow into your native soil. In the first year, you'll want to give it deep watering, then let the soil nearly dry out around the base of the plant.

Plants benefit tremendously from being mulched. Holly likes to be moist, but not wet during the growing season. A good mulch helps to retain moisture and keep the roots cool in the warmer drier climates as well as to insulate the roots in colder winter climates. Protect your plant by spreading 3 to 4 inches of mulch placed to 2 feet outside of the canopy.

Hollies need good drainage to thrive, so mix in pine bark soil conditioner if you'll be planting in heavy clay soils. They love slightly acidic soil conditions with a pH of 5.8 to 6.5.

Apply Dr. Earth Acid Lovers Organic and Natural Premium Fertilizer in the late winter and late summer in areas of high pH soil conditions.

Do all major pruning in the late winter. Additional trimming may be applied year-round to maintain a clean manicured look.

Compact Japanese Holly is remarkably easy to grow and is sure to bring its rich green color and bold characteristics to your landscape for years to come. Order now for best selection.

Buying Options for Plants

Nature Hills sells a large variety of plants with several options available. Plants are offered in both potted containers and as dormant bare root without soil. Here is a helpful resource to understand your options as you create a beautiful landscape with help from Nature Hills.

Ever wonder what a larger plant will mean for your landscape? Container Sizes are really all about the age of the plant!

Seasonally, Nature Hills offers hand selected, high quality bare root trees, shrubs and perennials. Bare root plants are sold by height from the top of the root system to the top of the plant. Plants may be taller than the height minimums.

  • Popular sizes of select trees are 1 foot, 2 feet, 3 feet, etc.
  • Popular sizes of select bare root plants is 1 foot, 18 inches, etc.

Nature Hills Container Size by Volume

Young Plants to 18 Months
Size Volume
2"x2"x3" Ranges from .18 to .21 dry quarts / .198 to .23 dry liters in volume
4.5" Container Equal to .655 dry quart / .72 dry liter in volume
3.5" Container Equal to .67 dry quart / .74 dry liter in volume
4" Container Equal to .87 dry quart / .96 dry liter in volume
1 Quart Equal to 1 dry quart / 1.1 dry liter in volume
5.5" Container Equal to 1.89 of a dry quart / 2.08 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x5" Ranges from .8 to 1.1 dry quarts / .88 to 1.2 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x6" Ranges from 1.0 to 1.3 dry quarts / 1.1 to 1.41 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x9" Ranges from 1.1 to 2.1 dry quarts / 1.2 to 2.3 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x10" Ranges from 1.7 to 2.3 dry quart / 1.87 to 2.53 dry liters in volume
Plants 18 Months - 2.5 Years Old
Size Volume
2 Quart Equal to 2 dry quarts / 2.2 dry liters in volume
#1 Container Ranges from 2.26 to 3.73 dry quarts / 2.49 to 4.11 dry liters in volume
5"x5"x12" Equal to 3.5 to 4.3 dry quarts / 3.85 to 4.74 dry liters in volume
Plants 2 - 4 Years Old
Size Volume
#2 Container Ranges from 1.19 to 1.76 dry gallons / 5.24 to 7.75 dry liters in volume
#3 Container Ranges from 2.32 to 2.76 dry gallons / 10.22 to 12.16 dry liters in volume
Plants 3 - 5 Years Old
Size Volume
#5 Container Ranges from 2.92 to 4.62 dry gallons / 12.86 to 20.35 dry liters in volume
#7 Container Ranges from 5.98 to 6.08 dry gallons / 26.34 to 26.78 dry liters in volume

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To obtain a more accurate shipment time-frame, simply enter your zip code in the “Find Your Growing Zone” box to the right. Our plants are grown all over the country and lead time on items may be different because of this. Once your order is placed, you will also receive the specific shipment time-frame information as part of your order confirmation. Once an item ships, you will receive shipment notification and tracking numbers, so you can follow along while your plant travels to your doorstep.

Shipping Rates

At Nature Hills we handle, package and ship the products you order with the utmost care to ensure healthy delivery. Shipping and handling charges are calculated based on the tables below. Please note that some items include an additional handling surcharge, these will be noted on the item's product page.

From To S&H
0 - 19.99 14.95
20 - 49.99 17.95
50 - 69.99 19.95
70 - 99.99 24.95
100 - 129.99 29.95
130 - 130+ Approx 25%

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Compact Japanese Holly Is Suited to Grow in Zones 6-9
Growing Zones 6-9
More Information
Botanical Name Ilex crenata 'Compacta'
Foliage Evergreen
Mature Height 4 feet
Mature Spread 4 - 5 feet
Soil Type Well Drained
Sun Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Growth Rate Slow
Flower Color White
Fall Color Evergreen