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Golden King Holly (Ilex altaclerensis)Golden King Holly (Ilex altaclerensis)Ilex altaclerensis Golden King - 3 litre PotGolden King Holly Leaves (Ilex altaclerensis Golden King)

'Golden King' Holly Hedge Plants

Ilex altaclerensis 'Golden King'Feefo logo

The details

Ilex altaclerensis

  • Evergreen leaves muffle sound & slow wind well.
  • 100% female plants, self fertile
  • Smooth leaves, few spines
  • Variegated green in the centre, cream-yellow margins
  • Beautiful clipped hedging
  • Shade and damp tolerant
  • Honey fungus resistant
  • RHS Award of Garden Merit
  • To 6 metres as a tree
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Description

Ilex x altaclerensis 'Golden King': Female Variegated Holly Plants, Red Berries

Ilex Golden King has smoother and flatter leaves than "normal" holly, with only a few small spines. They are deep green with a pale yellow-cream margins.

Although it has a male name, this is in fact a female variety, which will make brownish red berries in the winter, although these are less abundant and less red than Alaska. It grows into a medium-sized tree, as well as making a first-class evergreen hedge plant or topiary specimen. A tall holly hedge is a good evergreen windbreak. Popular with wildlife.
Browse our holly hedging plants or our full range of hedging.

Holly is only delivered pot-grown, year round. All our hedge plants are measured by their height in centimetres above the ground (the roots and pot aren't measured).

Features:

  • Evergreen leaves muffle sound & slow down wind well.
  • 100% female plants, self fertile
  • Smooth leaves, few spines
  • Variegated green in the centre, cream-yellow margins
  • Beautiful clipped hedging
  • Shade and damp tolerant
  • Honey fungus-resistant
  • RHS Award of Garden Merit
  • To 6 metres as a tree

Growing

Hollies will grow on just about any soil, both chalky and acidic. They are happy in quite deep shade, near the sea, and in areas of atmospheric pollution. Mature plants are drought resistant.

This variety has stable variegation, so it's rare for leaves to revert to green but, as with any variegated plant, cut out reverted stems if you see them.

Spacing a Holly hedge: Plant Holly at 2 or 3 plants per metre, 33-50cm apart.

In Your Garden Design

With its variegated leaves and its conical growth habit, this is a popular holly for garden designers to use as a textural feature in borders. Its pretty little white flowers, which bloom in late summer to early autumn and are followed by clusters of red berries, give it extra interest. Planted alongside the male version, Golden Queen, it can make a striking hedge. Plant with a good old-fashioned cottage garden plants such as snapdragon (Antirrhinum) or foxgloves (digitalis) or add in begonias, geraniums and pansies and you are onto a winning combination. They can make good standard plant features on patios and terraces.

Did You Know?

'Golden King' is also known as the Highclere Holly (alta - high; clerensis - Clere), as it was first discovered in the 1830s at Highclere Castle, famous as the location for Downton Abbey, the popular television series.

Don't forget Holly berries are toxic, but don't let that prevent you from bringing branches in to the house to use as Christmas decorations. This is a practice that has gone on since pagan times.