The Q&A Archives: holly problem

Question: My holly has new growth but on the bottom to mid way up the leaves are yellow and some have brown tips. I water almost everyday when it is not local garden told me it was lacking water. What else can I do to make it fill in and turn green?It is 2 years old and a neilly stevens.

Answer: Watering everyday can be a problem with trees and shrubs. Light applications of water can keep the roots close to the surface and can also keep the soil soggy enough to suffocate the roots. Your holly will be healthier if you water deeply once or twice a week. Build a watering basin beneath the holly by mounding up several inches of soil in a circle about 12 inches from the trunk of the holly. Fill this basin with water, allow to drain, then fill it a second time. Watering in this manner will concentrate the moisture directly over the root mass and allow it to trickle down and wet the entire root area. Once a week should be all your holly needs. I think you will see a great improvement in its health if you water in the fashion. You can prune your holly back (I just shear mine with hedge trimmers, taking off a few inches each spring). Pruning will encourage new growth, will remove browning leaves and will result in a fuller, more vigorous shrub. Good luck with your holly.

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