Blue Prince Holly
A Holly with a Regal Reputation
Intentionally bred to be cold-hardy as well as beautiful, Meserve hybrid hollies have stood the test of time since their introduction in the 1960s. Meserve hollies are also called “blue hollies,” because their leaves are a lovely shade of dark bluish-green. Blue Prince Holly (Ilex x meserveae ‘Blue Prince’) is a go-to holly in this class because it’s a non-fussy, evergreen shrub that requires very little care to reward you with outstanding landscape design appeal.
Picture This in Your Landscape
Use this checklist of features to paint a mental picture of Blue Prince Holly growing in your yard or garden:
• Glossy, evergreen, dark bluish-green leaves.
• Leaves with uniform saw-tooth edges.
• Dark purplish stems.
• Height and width proportionate – 8 to 12 feet tall and wide.
No Muss, No Fuss
You’ll love the minimal maintenance required to keep Blue Prince Holly in tip-top shape. It’s not too fussy about the type of soil you have, but it’ll perform its best in rich, acidic, slightly moist soil on a site that has good drainage. You can prune it in early spring before the new growth starts if you want to shape it, but you don’t have to prune this shrub because its natural shape is so full and pretty. Like any shrub, you’ll want to keep Blue Prince Holly watered well during the first season after you plant it so it can develop a strong, healthy root system.
Earning Its Keep
Blue Prince Holly is a versatile shrub that offers numerous landscape design rewards, such as:
• Softening corners of your house.
• Screening undesirable features, such as utility boxes.
• Anchoring flower beds.
• Hedging your property boundaries.
A Masculine Holly
The “prince” part of Blue Prince Holly hints at its gender. Did you know that most hollies are either male or female plants? This means that if you want to see lots of red berries on your holly shrubs, you’ll have to plant at least one male plant -- called a pollenizer -- that produces flowers to fertilize the female holly plants (female plants produce the berries). Blue Prince Holly is a male plant, and its perfect female companion is, fittingly, Blue Princess Holly. Plant one Blue Prince Holly near one (or up to 10) Blue Princess Hollies to ensure good cross-pollination. But if you want to use Blue Prince Holly simply as a non-fruiting hedge, you can certainly plant a row of these male hollies -- no females needed!