Dying dwarf holly

Asked February 18, 2017, 10:49 AM EST

I planted a total of 6 dwarf hollies two years ago. Within months, two died and had to be replaced. We thought they died because of an exceptionally hot summer. Now it appears all but one holly has died or is dying. Any ideas? Thank you.

Henrico County Virginia trees and shrubs

3 Responses

Very difficult to predict why plants died without an inspection. Likely suspects, poor drainage (soil stays too wet), soil too dry, newly planted plants not getting irrigated every other day in sunny conditions (watering soil ball and not surrounding soil), ...

Does it help to know that I also planted 6 accent spirea alongside the hollies and those are thriving. They were all planted at the same time in the same bed. I haven't had any issues at all with those.

Spirea, in general, are more tolerant of poor conditions. But the fact that spirea prospered and the holly did not implies a plant-specific or species-specific reason for the hollies demise. In addition to my other suggestions, the hollies may have been root bound, may have had a disease, ...