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Holly plant care

Holly plant care


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Holly plant care

Introduction

The Holly is a sub arctic tree. It needs to be full grown and grown in full sun.

From planting to pruning.

Seedlings in an average pot may take up to 5 months to reach 50cms tall. At 50cms they should have no more than one spindle-leaf. Holly is also a little prone to winter injury, but is very good at putting up a spindly new growth spring. Prune your mature holly to a height of 4 feet (1.2m).

These are not true flowers, but are form of fruit similar to bilberries. Green capsules that have a slight nutty flavour inside are produced on the ends of branches from March onwards.

Fruiting is a method of pollination. It occurs at the same time as the bird breeding season and if the two are not brought together, it is necessary to hand pollinate. There are many methods of pollination, and the best way is by gentle rubbing the fruit from the stem as it's developing and placing them in a box of Styrofoam.

Fruiting can occur in September but it's best to wait until October, when the cones are dry.

Flowering is the most important part of the plant, it starts in February when the new growth will be the best and ripen in September. Flowers are not often visited by pollinating insects, but every now and then a bee might land on one and pollinate. Be gentle with them, as they're fragile. They do not like constant movement and if you handle them too hard they'll become damaged. If you are moving them for a short distance a feather duster will do it, and for longer distances you will need to carry them gently. When the flowers are fully open, a handful of pollen from the anthers, wrapped in a tissue paper is applied to each flower head and covered with cotton wool or cotton bud. Do this while the flower head is still wrapped in its bud and you will probably get many viable seeds.

Care in Winter.

Pruning the branches while the plant is dormant is difficult, and in fact, holly does not tolerate being pruned. In the winter, only a little pruning is necessary. The bare branches must be cut at a 45 degree angle to allow the buds to sprout next year. When a bud shows signs of coming through, it should be pruned away. Do this in the late afternoon to allow the morning sun to warm them.

In a mild winter, the plant needs little protection as long as there is light and shelter from snow and ice.

The Holly can take a dry, windy season without damage. During very dry periods the tree may get a bit of a thirst, so you may find a trickle of water on the soil in the summer months, but this should disappear when you have a shower.

You may notice that if a branch is pruned away, a replacement is already growing in the same spot. This is due to a new branch. A small band-saw


Watch the video: A Focus On Holly: All You Need To Know