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Sky Pencil Holly
Sky Pencil Holly

Sky Pencil Holly


The Sky Pencil Holly is a cultivar of Ilex Crenata, Japanese Holly, Sky Pencil Holly is an evergreen shrub that is smaller than most of the grow to be about 4-6' tall and 1-3' wide.  It is densely branched, tight, and has columnar growth. It is a good container or accent plant and works well in formal gardens as it provides a good vertical accent in mixed borders. 

Growth Habits

Tall and narrow, Sky Pencil has a slow growth rate and it may not thrive in areas with high heat and humidity (USDA zones 8 and 9). The species is dioecious (meaning individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant, thus both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). It is pollinated by bees and is not self-fertile. Sky Pencil Holly is an all-female cultivar which needs a male pollinator in order to produce fruit.


Plant in the full sun to partial shade in acidic well-drained soil though it tolerates a wide range of soil types, from moist to dry, and actually prefers clay. It tolerates shade and air pollution. However, it does not do well in alkaline soils or under drought conditions.


The leaves and berries of the Japanese Sky Pencil are mildly poisonous to pets. Holly Sky Pencil is very low maintenance once established and can deter deer.