Strongbox® Inkberry Holly

Availability: Out of stock

For a well-balanced landscape, it's advised to ensure that at least one-third of your plants are evergreen. These rock-steady plants help set the lines of your design; giving structure and year-round color for interest in all seasons! For those who prefer to limit the pruning requirements, we highly recommend Strongbox® Inkberry Holly (Ilex glabra 'ILEXFARROWTRACEY') is an excellent, elegant broad-leaved evergreen.

Strongbox Inkberry Holly stays small and grows into a broadly rounded shape. It resembles a Boxwood but grows faster! This broad-leaved evergreen shrub maintains its blue-green foliage all the way to the ground. The pretty, round leaves do not have rough-edged prickles. They make a handsome green accent plant all season.

Strongbox® is a female plant and may produce tiny black-berries if you have a male Inkberry Holly nearby. History buffs can try their hand at recreating the Civil War experience of homesick soldiers writing with homespun ink!

This hardy evergreen is just about maintenance-free, not needing any coddling, and still able to look great! Strongbox® is low-maintenance and very disease and pest resistant. No wonder the popularity of these charming small evergreens is skyrocketing!

Planting and Application:

Massed plantings of Strongbox® Inkberry Holly act just like the right setting to set off a jewel. Rely on their year-round visual impact to ground the effect of an informal grouping of flowering deciduous trees. An excellent, adaptable broadleaved evergreen with or without the fruit.

They won't mind wet feet once in a while. Try at the edge of a pond. Weave them into the mesic zone of a planned Rain Garden. Use a sweet edging row to corral an airy-fairy Cottage Garden. Strongbox® also shores up the look of free-range sculptural shrubs like Fothergilla and Buttonbush.

Let them grow out without any pruning to provide a natural, evergreen outline to a rustic Butterfly Garden! This is a great plant to include in a Pollinator Garden, as the tiny white spring flowers support honey bees. If the blooms get pollinated, local songbirds will certainly enjoy feasting on their berries in the fall!

It doesn't matter if you are renting, or if you own your property - you can always grow Strongbox® Inkberry Holly in large outdoor containers to gain a wonderfully formal feeling, for little more effort than regular watering. Pop them into containers for your patio. You might love the look of a curated collection of shapes, colors, and styles with a consistent Strongbox Inkberry Holly plant used in each pot!

You'll find so many ways to use these tidy, architectural plants to spice up the looks of your landscape. Repeat them in a mixed garden border to give a constant evergreen presence, even in winter. Use it as a formal low-hedging plant that needs little pruning. Or, shape them to add to your foundation, or in patio plantings. Create a low, solid hedge by planting them two feet apart. You'll measure from the center of one to the center of the next.

  • Beautiful Blue-Green Foliage Without Spines or Prickles
  • Tiny White Flowers in Springtime Support Beneficial Pollinators
  • Female Cultivar - Black Berries in Fall With a Male Pollinator Nearby
  • Compact & Carefree Broadly Rounded Form
  • Grows Faster Than Boxwood
  • Historical Use
  • Sophisticated Choice for Outdoor Containers
  • Great for Foundation Plantings & Low Hedge Edging

#ProPlantTips for Care:

Plant Strongbox® in either full sun or partial shade. Give them at least four hours of morning sunshine. In very warm climates, they'll appreciate a little afternoon shade. Inkberry Holly is tolerant but performs best in moist, acidic soils. These ericaceous plants need a lower pH soil. Apply a medium amount of supplemental water regularly, in the absence of rainfall. Add a three-inch layer of pine straw or pine bark mulch, and fertilize with acid-loving plant formulas following label directions.

Pruning is not really needed. However, you may want to shorten or even up growth after the first flush of growth in late spring. This premium selection is quite adaptable to a wide variety of different garden sites, acidic soils, and conditions!

  • Widely Adaptable - Full Sun Or Partial Shade
  • Can Tolerate Periodically Soggy Soils
  • Rarely Needs Pruning
  • Resists Winter Burn!
  • Seldomb Bothered by Rabbits & Deer, Pest & Disease-Resistant

Really, you can style these small shrubs any way you like! Their versatility is one of the reasons people adore them so much. Create a stunning style with this carefree native broad-leaved evergreen. Place your order for Strongbox® Inkberry Holly today from!

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

Keep in mind, specific varieties and different growing conditions can affect the rate at which plants grow. Variations in size may occur.

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 .65 dry quart / .72 dry liter in volume
Sprinter Pot Equal to .63 dry quart / .69 dry liter in volume
4" Container Ranges from .31 to .87 / .35 to .96 dry liter in volume
6" Container Equal to 1.4 dry quarts / 1.59 dry liters 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
#6 Container Ranges from 5.25 to 6.01 dry gallons / 23.12 to 26.42 dry liters in volume
#7 Container Ranges from 5.98 to 6.08 dry gallons / 26.34 to 26.78 dry liters in volume

About Plant Sentry™

Plant Sentry is designed to protect both consumers and the nursery trade from invasive plant pests and diseases. Sites that display the Plant Sentry protection badge are protected from consumers buying and nurseries shipping material carrying invasive pests and diseases.

This proprietary eCommerce software prevents the shipment of a restricted plant to each state. The Plant Sentry system includes a shipment certification program. The Plant Sentry Compliance Officer works closely with and each nursery or fulfillment center to ensure only compliant plants are sold to customers.

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Plant Sentry


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. We use FedEx, UPS, or USPS at our discretion.

Due to winter weather we have put a hold on shipping to the areas shown below in grey. You can still order now and we will ship the plant to you during an appropriate time for your zone.

*If you have found your zone already, it will be highlighted in the table below.
Color Zone Times
3 Spring 2019
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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 24.99
20 - 49.99 29.99
50 - 69.99 34.99
70 - 99.99 39.99
100 - 129.99 44.99
130 - 149.99 48.99
150 - 150+ Approx 28%

Click here to see our full rates


Strongbox® Inkberry Holly Is Suited to Grow in Zones 5-9
Growing Zones 5-9
More Information
Brand Proven Winners ColorChoice
Botanical Name Ilex glabra 'ILEXFARROWTRACEY'
Type Broad-Leaved Evergreen
Mature Height 2 - 3 feet
Mature Spread 2 - 3 feet
Sun Exposure Full Sun
Soil Adaptable to Most Soils
Moisture Moderate
Growth Rate Medium
Foliage Color Green
Fall Color Evergreen
Pollinator Friendly Yes
Pruning Time Early Spring
Fragrant No
Photos courtesy of Proven Winners, Inc -