This time of year is when the Nellie Stevens Holly casts off any damaged leaves from last year, those are the yellow leaves you see falling to the ground. In May/June, the Holly will cover itself in new leaves. During the leaf production period of their life cycle, you can greatly increase the foliage output by putting a bucket (1-2 gallons) of water at the base of each tree everyday in May/June. This daily watering will enable the Hollies to produce 100’s of additional new leaves. Multiplying that by the number of trees in your living fence and it is 1,000’s …. yes 1,000’s of extra new leaves each year. It is important not to prune during this time period!
This is ONLY for the Nellie Stevens Holly, Blue Holly and Dragon Lady Hollies. Normally we hardly water this time of year because in the garden, the turf and azaleas look fantastic. Water the hollies during the entire months of May/June and the trees will reward you with lush new foliage. This year’s extended winter is causing the holly to continue making new leaves well into June, so continue to water daily through June. Then, through the remaining part of the summer, normal watering patterns can proceed twice a week, depending on if there is any rain.