Rutgers Red Beauty® Holly

Invention Summary:

Red Beauty® is a new and distinct variety of evergreen holly distinguished in that it combines from three species (Ilex aquifolium, Ilex rugosa, and Ilex pernyi), and has desirable landscape and production traits which distinguish it from all other forms of Ilex. These plants have a moderate growth rate, and will typically reach 7 to 10 feet tall and 4 to 5 feet wide in 7 to 9 years. Leaves do not become lighter green when bearing a heavy crop of fruit as do the leaves of many varieties of Ilex.

A plant in the mature phase (flowering) can be achieved in one year from a rooted cutting taken from a plant in the mature phase. Subsequent annual growth rate of up to 1 foot per year for plants grown in full sun, depending on climatic conditions, soil or type of artificial growing medium utilized, and cultural practices such as fertilization and irrigation. A unique conical or pyramidal shape can be achieved by simply developing a central leader, which will also increase the height. 

Market Applications:

  • Unique landscape plant
  • A privacy screen
  • A narrow hedge to define your yard
  • Background for your perennials


Red Beauty® has a unique combination of characteristics:

  • Unique Combination of Berries, Leaves, Flowers, Form, Compactness, Hardiness
  • Abundant, bright red berries and dark green glossy foliage. Medium-size spiny leaves
  • Growth habit: Narrow to moderate conical form. Little/no pruning. Dense branches
  • Cold hardiness Evergreen, High hardiness level in Zones 6 to 10
  • Light needs: Full to partial sun
  • Mature size: Moderate, 7 to 10 feet tall, 4 to 5 feet wide after 7+ years
  • Blooms: Small white flowers in spring
  • Highly deer resistant, demonstrated

Intellectual Property & Development Status:

U.S. Plant Patent #14,750

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Deborah Perez
Associate Director, Physical Sciences & Ag
Rutgers University
Flowering Tree