This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
The shrubs here enumerated are better known under the name Osmanthus, but the characters are insufficient to constitute a good genus. Leaves simple, entire or spiny-toothed. Flowers small, white or greenish yellow. Fruit a drupe. There are upwards of 30 species in the warmer parts of the Old World. Olea is the ancient Latin name of the Olive, 0. Europaea.
1. 0. ilicifolia, syn. Osmanthus ilicifolius and aquifolius. - A handsome evergreen shrub with coriaceous smooth shining oval or oblong prickly-toothed Holly-like leaves. This is very variable in regard to the size and toothing of the leaves, and there are several variegated varieties in cultivation. A native of Japan.