Foster Holly (Ilex x attenuata 'Fosteri') in the Ilex Database

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Foster Holly
Give a thumbs up Foster's Holly

Also sold as:
Foster's #2

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Tree
Sun Requirements: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 6a -23.3 °C (-10 °F) to -20.6 °C (-5 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 9b
Leaves: Evergreen
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Other: Female
Uses: Windbreak or Hedge
Provides winter interest
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Propagation: Seeds: Self fertile
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Miscellaneous: Dioecious
Child plants: one child plant

Foster Holly (Ilex x attenuata 'Fosteri') 001

Photo gallery:
Location: In an Oklahoma City gardenDate: 05-08-2019Foster Holly (Ilex x attenuata 'Fosteri') 001
By jathton
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Location: In an Oklahoma City gardenDate: 05-08-2019Foster Holly (Ilex x attenuata 'Fosteri') 003
By jathton
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Posted by jathton (Oklahoma City, OK) on Oct 30, 2019 3:40 PM

Foster's Holly is nothing short of elegant and aristocratic... WHEN it is sited to best advantage. The trouble is most homeowners choose to locate this plant at the front corners of their home. They think a nice, tear-drop shaped plant at each corner will add a nice sense of symmetry to the front landscape. They completely ignore the mature size of this plant when making this decision... and a few years down the line they end up shearing the plant to keep it within bounds. Not only do they butcher the natural shape of the plant they end up shearing off all the berries that make it so attractive in fall and winter.
A far better solution is to locate this Holly somewhere in the lawn where it can be a stand-alone specimen plant. Let it develop without pruning until it attains a stature that really shows off all its qualities. The landscape will then have a beautiful, pyramidal plant with evergreen foliage and bright red berries in fall and winter.
And if you want to really show it off to best advantage plant a triangle of three plants. Don't get crazy and try to make them all the same size. Let them be different sizes. That will only add to the beauty of the grouping.
Remember: "The only symmetry in nature is the symmetry man imposes on it." Try hard to not be imposing.

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