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Hollies: The Genus Ilex

By Fred C. Galle

With fruit colored orange, yellow, black, and white in addition to the familiar red, sometimes lasting six months or more, hollies are ideal ornamentals. Hollies represents years of research by one of the giants of American horticulture, covering all the hollies in cultivation with descriptions of many of the 30 deciduous and 780 evergreen species, including upright trees of 60 feet to creeping prostrate forms.

Awards for this book: American Horticultural Society Book Award, Choice Magazine Outstanding Academic Book

Media reviews

"Fred Galle has struck a fine balance between the academic and applied portions of the text."

Pacific Horticulture

"Galle’s guide to the genus Ilex presents a delightfully balanced yet comprehensive study of these remarkably varied plants ... Galle provides home gardeners with the advice necessary to select plants of appropriate size, hardiness, and cultural requirements."

—Alice Joyce, Booklist

"Hollies: the Genus Illex is a volume which every university library should have. It would be valuable for the personal libraries of many, including horticulturists and landscape architects, and should be included on the reading lists of horticulture, landscape architecture, and woody plant classes."

Plant Science Bulletin

"The best book on the subject, Hollies: The Genus Ilex by Fred Galle"

—Barbara Damrosch, American Homestyle and Gardening

"I have been spending time with a huge and handsome book devoted to these varied and beautiful plants. As a result, my appreciation for them and eagerness to grow more of them are rising rapidly."

—Ethel Fried, Manchester (CT) Journal Inquirer

"This impressive, much-needed work provides comphrehensive coverage of holly taxonomy and cultivation."

—Chris Brickell, Garden (Peterborough)

"As a reference tool, most any and all aspects of holly for horticultural purposes are likely to be found here."

Northwest Garden News

"This is a work that is essential for all those wishing to know all there is to know about Hollies."

—John E. Bryan, Gardening Newsletter

"This new book will be appreciated by plant lovers ranging from hobbyists to scientists to nurserymen. It has immediatedly become the preeminent holly reference."

—Jeff Lewis, Garden News

"A wealth of information for avid amateurs, students, educators, and other professional horticulturists."


"A wealth of information for avid amateurs, students, educators, and other professional horticulturists."


"Hollies: The Genus Ilex is now the preeminent holly reference and will remain so for a long time ... It will be appreciated by plant lovers ranging from hobbyists to scientists."

—Michael Hayman, American Gardener

"A Herculean job was performed with considerable success in identifying, describing, and cataloging the exceptionally large population of holly varieties, cultivars, clones and forms."

—James H. Flynn Jr., American Reference Books Annual

"The first definitive work in English on this 60-million-year-old-genus."

—Patricia A. Taylor, Trenton Times

"A treasure of information ... belongs on every holly grower’s bookshelf."

—David Morgan, Nursery Management and Production

"As the custodian of a National Collection of holly species and cultivars, I am delighted to see this book published and would recommend it to anyone with a serious interest in the genus Ilex."

—Mark Flanagan, New Phytologist

"His outstanding research abilities have now produced a book on hollies that will be used for decades."

—Evelyn Wolf, Horticulture Review

"It is easy to characterize this long-awaited book with a single superlative — it is unsurpassed — but a long string of superlatives would be even more fitting, for it is also monumental, authoritative, exhaustive, and, in short, indispensable for anyone who is serious about growing hollies."


About the author

Fred C. Galle

The late Fred C. Galle was director of horticulture at Callaway Gardens from 1953 to 1979, then served as curator until his retirement in 1983. He received many honors for his research and outstanding contributions to horticulture, including the Liberty Hyde Bailey Medal of the American Horticultural Society, the Gold Medal of the American Rhododendron Society, and the Arthur Hoyt Scott Garden Award of Swarthmore College. His final book was Hollies, The Genus Ilex, also published by Timber Press. Mr. Galle died in 1998 at the age of 79.

Read more about Fred C. Galle

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