With dark green leaves and small white flowers, the holly tree is a great favourite for gardeners and landscapers alike. Not only is the holly tree attractive, it is also an easy tree to care for after it has been planted. If you have inherited a plot of ground with a holly tree on it, or you are thinking about planting holly trees in your garden, make sure that you understand the rudiments of holly tree care.
Place the holly tree appropriately. Holly trees will tolerate both sun and shade, but remember that they will grow to a height of around 50 feet or more. Choose a sheltered place where they are not exposed to extremes of temperature and look for soil that is slightly acidic and drains well.
Plant the holly tree during the early spring months. This ensures the maximum amount of growth during the critical first year.
Lay a 2- to 4-inch layer of mulch around the base of the tree after it has been planted to keep the roots cool and moist.
Keep the mulch around the base of the holly tree moist throughout the summer, but allow it to dry at the beginning of fall.
Fertilise the holly tree during the late fall or the early spring. Look for a fertiliser that is specially made for broad-leafed evergreens, or simply choose any good slow-release granular fertiliser.
Prune the holly tree regularly. Do not cut lower branches shorter than the higher branches, as this can lead to those branches dying off from lack of light. Young holly trees have a symmetrical pyramidal shape, but as they age, they will open up and start to sprawl. While holly can be pruned lightly at any time of year, waiting until the plant is dormant in the coldest winter months is ideal.
Spray the leaves of the holly tree with an anti-transpirant spray during the winter. Anti-transpirant spray prevents moisture loss and it will protect your holly tree from the dehydrating effects of sun and wind during the winter.
Once a year, apply 1 inch of coffee grounds to the roots of your holly tree. Coffee grounds contain a great deal of nitrogen and make for faster plant growth and an increased ability to resist blight.