Growing Holly Successfully: 9 Tips

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 09:05 pm

Easy to grow, holly flourishes quite well everywhere in France. It is a decorative shrub with evergreen, green and glossy leaves. Moreover, its red berries are more decorative than its leaves. Here are some tips for growing this prickly shrub, which is particularly popular during the holiday season.

When to prune holly?
Since holly is a slow-growing tree, it usually does not require pruning. However, it is possible to give it a specific shape if necessary. To do this, it is best to prune in late winter or spring. Indeed, pruning in autumn can prevent the appearance of berries. It is also advisable to wear gloves during this pruning. The operation will mainly consist in removing the misplaced branches, those which cross and those which are dead. The leaves of the holly should not be used as compost. Indeed, they would take a long time to compost since they are very tough.

Growing Holly Successfully: 9 Tips

To learn more about pruning, follow the advice of the editor.

How to care for holly?
Here is how to maintain the holly according to the seasons:

In spring: This is the ideal time to prune holly. During this period, a suitable fertilizer is also recommended. Shredded horn can do the trick.
Summer: During this period, holly requires watering when the weather is hot and dry. Mulching at the base of the plant will also keep it cool.
In autumn: During this period, maintenance will consist of removing dead leaves from its foliage and weeding around its base.
In winter: In winter, do not let snow fall on its branches. Indeed, it risks to break them. You should also know that the fruits of the holly are somewhat toxic.

1/9 Cultivation of holly

The cultivation of holly is best done in autumn or spring. Indeed, the air is too hot in summer and in winter, its roots do not have time to develop and settle because they fear the frost.

2/9 What kind of soil ?

Holly prefers humus-rich, well-drained and deep soil. This soil should also have been amended the previous fall. It can also withstand acidic soils, but does not tolerate soils that are too calcareous.

3/9 Location

The holly appreciates a mid-shade or sunny exposure for the varieties with variegated foliage. Indeed, under the sun, its variegated leaves are more beautiful and it fructifies better.

4/9 Beware of drafts!

Avoid exposing holly to drafts.

5/9 Planting

Plant the holly in a 40 x 40 cm hole.

6/9 Watering

Regular watering is crucial during the first year after planting. This regular watering is done mainly in spring and summer.

7/9 Advice for good watering

The watering of the holly is done at the level of its foliage.

8/9 Maintenance in summer

Avoid drying out the soil where the holly is located, especially in summer.

9/9 The importance of mulching

Install a mulch at the foot of the holly to maintain humidity.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts. Jones James
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