Ilex × meserveae BLUE PRINCE
Common Name: blue holly
Type: Broadleaf evergreen
Family: Aquifoliaceae
Zone: 4 to 7
Height: 8.00 to 12.00 feet
Spread: 8.00 to 12.00 feet
Bloom Time: April to May
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Hedge
Flower: Insignificant
Leaf: Evergreen
Other: Winter Interest, Thorns
Tolerate: Air Pollution


Easily grown in average, medium moisture soil in full sun to part shade. Adaptable to both light and heavy soils, but prefers rich, moist, acidic soils with good drainage. Meserve hybrids are dioecious shrubs: BLUE PRINCE is a male plant and BLUE PRINCESS is a simultaneously-introduced, companion female plant. Plant mostly female plants because only females produce the attractive red berries which are so conspicuous in fall and winter. Prune to shape in early spring just before new growth begins. Good winter hardiness.

Noteworthy Characteristics

This hybrid holly is a broad, upright, evergreen shrub which eventually matures to 8-10' tall by 8-12' wide. Often seen growing much shorter, however. Features dark purplish stems and glossy, dark blue-green leaves which have spiny-toothed margins. Tiny, whitish flowers appear in spring and are relatively inconspicuous. This male cultivar produces abundant pollen over a long spring bloom period, thus making it an excellent pollinator for a number of female holly cultivars.


No serious disease or insect problems. Occasional problems with holly leaf miners, scale and mites. If leaves yellow while veins remain green (chlorosis), soil acidity probably needs adjustment.

Garden Uses

Excellent for foundation plantings, hedges, shrub borders or accents.