Densa Inkberry Holly (Ilex glabra ‘Densa’)

Densa Inkberry Holly

Sophisticated year-round greenery with leathery foliage and glossy green leaves on a compact, informal shrub! Inkberry Holly (Ilex glabra ‘Densa’) are mid-sized broad-leaved evergreen with lighter foliage that looks handsome and invigorating year-round.

Maintaining good branching right to the ground, Inkberry Holly always looks refined and full! Prune to any shape or size, these wonderfully rounded shrubs always look divine. The selection ‘Densa’ is a compact form of the species growing rounded and dense, growing up to a 4-7 foot range. Older plants that are planted in slightly acidic soils will live longer and grow a bit larger. This selection is easily maintained at the smaller end of the size range with pruning.

Densa is a female cultivar that is an easy-care plant, grown for lustrous foliage, tiny white flowers, and winter berries that are black as ink, but only if there is a male pollinator Inkberry planted nearby! Growing with broad, upright branches, the glossy, lance-shaped leaves offer a year-round sublime-green sheen. Plus, it is a high-style look to your garden beds or borders, without the price tag!

Planting and Application:

Densa brings sublime quality to containers and planters! Try them in large pots along your paths for height, or flanking the start of a garden room. Stand a pair of lovely sentries at your entry to welcome visitors year-round.

Working as backdrops in Formal beds as well as informal Cottage gardens! Evergreen shrubs are always amazing facer plantings to hide the bare legs of your larger trees and shrubs! Fringe a ring of these around your fire-pits, pergolas or garden swing to create a private outdoor space you can’t wait to get lost in! Thick privacy and relaxing textures whisk the rest of the world away.

Give your garden spaces the spa treatment by adding seclusion with these soothing plants around your seating areas or meditation spots. The 4 season greenery makes Inkberry fantastic foundation plantings and anchors to other garden beds. Adding an amazing high-style touch to your landscape without all the work!

Create garden vignettes by planting a curved row of these jewel-tone shrubs around a focal point, your garden seating or to highlight an urn or sculpture!

These plants will grow together to create a low-maintenance groundcover on slopes and to soften retaining walls. Form property definition, or line formal walkways and paths with verdant color all year! Try a staggered zig-zag to create a mass planting on a slope or a large bare patch for erosion control and fill hard-to-mow areas in greenery!

  • Informal Glossy Dark-Green Broad-Leaf Evergreen
  • Leathery Sophisticated Lance-Shaped Foliage
  • Inconspicuous White Blooms
  • Dense Rounded Shrub – Native Alternative to Boxwood
  • Hardy Versatile & Four-Season Interest
  • Female Shrub With Sparse Ink-Black Berries When Pollinated
  • Fantastic Foundation or Hedge Plant

Tips for Care:

Densa Inkberry Holly likes full sun and tolerates a few hours of shade a day, making them versatile for use beneath ornamental trees, patios, and foundations. Not particular about soil type, Inkberry are hardy compact plants in growing zones 5 through 9. Just be sure these don’t dry out! Inkberry Hollies are excellent alternatives to Boxwood, especially in areas without well-drained soils. This plant appreciates regular water, so a generous layer of mulch helps retain soil moisture as well as insulate the root system from heat and chill. It is very important that the soil is slightly acidic, (lower pH) and appreciates winter watering. The best time to prune is in late winter or early spring.

  • Full Sun to Part Shade
  • Most Moist Soil Types
  • Prune to Shape Late Winter
  • Nice Alternative to Boxwood
  • Deer Seldom Bother It

All landscapes benefit from a strong, architectural anchor, such as the refined Densa Inkberry Holly!

Densa Inkberry Holly (Ilex glabra ‘Densa’) Details

Common name Densa Inkberry Holly
Botanical name Ilex glabra 'Densa'
Plant type Broad-Leaved Evergreen
Hardiness zone 5-9
Growth rate Slow
Height 4 - 7 ft.
Width 4 - 7 ft.
Sunlight Full Sun, Partial Shade
Moisture Medium
Soil condition Adaptable to Most Soils
Pollinator-friendly Yes
Pruning time After Flowering
Flower color White