I have a few young (2-5 years) shrubs that I've planted as borders for my yard They include 5 Nellie Stevens hollies, 5 Green Giant arborvitaes, and 4 Emerald Green arborvitaes. I don't do much with them except to mulch and water if needed (not this year), and they are all are doing well. Should I continue this approach, or would it be helpful to also fertilize them? If a side effect would be that they grew faster, that would be great, because at the current rate of growth by the time they get to a good screening size it'll probably be time to move!
Fertilizer can increase the growth rate. You are, however, more likely to run into problems from over fertilization than under fertilization. Do not fertilize now when it is hot and dry. Follow the guidelines in the following publication. https://extension.umd.edu/sites/default/files/_images/programs/hgic/Publications/HG23%20Fertilizing%... Consider the eventual size of these shrubs when you consider fertilization. They can get quite large. vw