Meaning of holly in English:


Pronunciation /ˈhɒli/

Translate holly into Spanish


  • A widely distributed evergreen shrub, typically having prickly dark green leaves, small white flowers, and red berries.

    Genus Ilex, family Aquifoliaceae: many species, in particular I. aquifolium

    ‘Both deciduous and evergreen hollies are much loved for their berries, which range in color from orange and red to yellow and black.’
    • ‘And then there are the usual green plants with red berries such as hollies and barberry, and old garden roses with showy hips.’
    • ‘Some popular small trees and shrubs with birds are: blueberries, elderberries, hollies, cherries, and dogwoods.’
    • ‘Some hollies have orange berries rather than red, as does Pyracantha (firethorn).’
    • ‘Severe winter conditions, and sometimes soil deficiencies, may cause physiological problems such as sunscald and purple spot on the leaves of evergreen hollies.’
    • ‘Their broadly indented margins show the distinctive prickly spines that are typical of most evergreen hollies - and dangerous to bare feet!’
    • ‘Evergreens and shrubs - including junipers and hollies - offer protection.’
    • ‘Japanese hollies seldom require much pruning in our area.’
    • ‘If you order one, make sure to also order a mate for it, since hollies come in males and females - and it takes both to make berries.’
    • ‘This month, nurseries will be offering dozens of hollies, many in full berry.’
    • ‘Most hollies are either male or female and need to have a nearby partner for good crop of berries to be produced, I suspect this is why ours crops so erratically.’
    • ‘The flowers are fairly small but numerous and are a satisfying contrast with the dark leaves of the holly tree.’
    • ‘Winter birds prefer evergreens like holly and junipers, which provide shelter and food.’
    • ‘These days, we use the holly primarily as a structural evergreen shrub.’
    • ‘The holly's convex, glossy leaves contrast nicely with the Korean boxwood's flat, oval, lighter green leaves.’
    • ‘The sharp, prickly leaves provide an effective deterrent, and the holly can be removed after a few weeks.’
    • ‘Avoid prickly leaves like holly or ones that are extremely fragile.’
    • ‘We bought what appeared to be a healthy holly tree, planted it in a large pot and placed it on our patio.’
    • ‘If you simply must have an evergreen, then what about a variegated holly?’
    • ‘Every garden should have holly with berries for Christmas.’


Middle English holi, shortened form of Old English holegn, holen, of Germanic origin; related to German Hulst.