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Sky Pencil Japanese Holly
Sky Pencil is an eye-catching accent or focal point in landscape beds. Where space is limited, it can be spaced as close as 15 to 18 inches apart in rows to form a unique, low maintenance hedge. More details below!

Sky Pencil Japanese Holly

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Sky Pencil Holly
Ilex crenata  'Sky Pencil'

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones: 5a-9b  Find Your Zone >


Note:  For our customers who live and garden north of USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 5a, where this Japanese Holly is not winter hardy, you'll be happy to know it can be grown in containers that can be brought indoors during winter and placed back outside when temperatures warm up in spring.



Special Attributes

Sky Pencil is a Japanese Holly with a distinct, upright, narrow columnar form that makes an exclamation point in the landscape! The evergreen foliage is dark green and dense with rounded leaves resembling those of boxwood. Excellent to frame an entryway or as a specimen or narrow hedge where space is limited. Shears well so height can be easily controlled. 




Landscape & Garden Uses

Growing 5 to 10 feet tall and only 18-24 inches wide (depending on pruning), the Sky Pencil Holly is one a few shrubs that naturally grows in the shape of a narrow column, with no pruning. That said, the plant can be topped to control height. Whether grown in containers or in the ground, Sky Pencil Holly is an ideal selection for those narrow spaces in home foundation plantings where height is needed. When spaced 18 inches apart is makes a dense, narrow privacy hedge where space is limited. 

Spacing:  18" for solid hedge;  3' or more for space between plants




Cultural Preferences

Sky Pencil Holly is easy to grow in sites that provide moist but well-drained soil and full sun to part shade. We suggest at least 6 hours or more of direct sun light per day. As with so many other types of ornamental plants, constantly soggy or wet soils can cause root rot or other harmful plant diseases. Where there is a soil drainage concern, either improve drainage or plant in raised beds to ensure proper drainage.




Helpful Articles

Click on the link below to get helpful advice from our experts on how to plant and care for Japanese Holly shrubs.




Plant Details

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones: 5a-9b  Find Your Zone >
Plant Type:  Evergreen Shrub 
Height at Maturity:  6-10' depending on pruning
Width at Maturity:  18-24"
Spacing:  18" for solid hedge;  3'+ for space between plants
Growth Habit / Form:  Dense, Columnar
Growth Rate:  Moderate
Flower Color:  None
Flower Size:  None
Flowering Period:  None
Flower Type:  None
Fragrant Flowers:  NA
Foliage Color:  Dark Green
Fragrant Foliage:  No
Berries:  Yes
Berry Color:  Black
Sun Needs:  Full Sun or Mostly Sun, Morning Sun with Dappled or Afternoon Shade, All Day Filtered Sun, Morning Shade with Evening Sun
Water Needs:  Average, Low when established
Soil Type:  Clay, Loam, Sandy, Silty
Soil Moisture / Drainage:  Well Drained Moist to Somewhat Dry
Soil pH:  4.5 - 6.5
Maintenance / Care:  Low 
Attracts:  Visual Attention
Resistances:  Deer, Disease, Drought, Heat, Clay Soil



Plant Long & Prosper!

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