Holly Trees for Sale Online
Holly trees are one of the most recognizable plants in North America unfortunately they are also one of the most underused evergreen trees as well. Holly Trees hold their attractive green foliage all year and produce mildly fragrant white flowers in the summer, which turn into vibrant red berries from fall through winter. Holly Tree branches have been used to decorate wreaths and fireplace mantles during the holidays for centuries.
Not only are the red berries attractive, but they also attract brightly colored birds to your garden during the winter months. Holly trees are fast-growing and disease-free. Once established, hollies require little attention or care, and holly trees are ideal for use as specimen trees or planted in groups of three or more. Hollies can also be planted in straight or staggered rows to create a dense privacy hedge, windbreak, or noise buffer near busy roadways.
Types of Holly Trees
There are two different types of Holly Trees in regards to growth habits. There are holly trees that grow wide such as Nellie Stevens holly or the American Holly Tree. These types can grow up to 15 feet wide at the base and form a cone shape. This type of holly is best suited for privacy screens or windbreaks in larger landscapes.
There are Holly trees that take on a more narrow columnar form and are better suited for smaller landscapes or planting closer to a house or walkway. Examples of this type are the gorgeous Dragon Lady Holly and the Christmas Jewel Holly. These ornamental trees have dark green leaves, which make the apple red berries stand out in winter. Urban gardeners are beginning to plant holly trees in large containers as moveable privacy.
Using Holly Trees in the Landscape
Holly trees grow in a wide range of growing zones across the United States. Holly trees can be planted anywhere in Zone 6 through 9, except for the American Holly, extending the hardiness range north into zone 5.
Most hollies grow best in full sun in well-drained soil; however, in the coastal areas of the east, the American hollies can be seen growing in the moist woods, and the berries make them standouts in the winter. The trade-off for them to survive as an understory tree in partial shade is that they tend to grow in a more open habit and never really become as dense as they would in the full sun.
The American holly does fill a niche that not many other evergreens fill. Gardeners often look for an evergreen tree that can survive under larger deciduous trees. In the winter, when leaves fall from the forest trees, these trees will remain green and provide privacy and habitat for birds and smaller animals.
Holly trees make excellent windbreaks or privacy hedges since they have deep, strong roots. The root system of holly trees is a taproot with one large root that grows straight down and then smaller feeder roots that spread out.
Holly trees to benefit Wild Birds and Animals
Holly trees are extremely important food sources for numerous species of birds and other wild animals. In the fall and early winter, the red berries are hard and apparently unpalatable to birds. After being frozen or frosted several times during the winter, the fruits become softer and milder in taste. This symbiotic relationship between the birds and hollies serves both well.
The birds benefit from having a food source that doesn't become available to them until mid to late winter when most other food sources have been exhausted. The holly benefits from its seeds being widely dispersed later in the winter leaving just enough time for the seed to freeze before germinating. Gardeners also benefit from this agreement between the bids and trees as it allows us to enjoy the bright red berries well into the winter.
During winter storms, birds often take refuge in holly trees, which provide shelter and protection from predators through the hard spiny leaves.
Care Tips for Holly Trees
Holly trees ask for very little from the gardener. Hollies of all types do thrive in acidic soil and this is easily attained by adding an acidifying fertilizer in the spring. We recommend Holly-tone by Espoma. Simply sprinkle the recommended rate around the root ball of the holly and give the plant a good deep watering.
Holly-tone is organic and specially formulated to give holly plants all the nutrients and acidity they require to thrive.
Pruning is generally not needed on a regular basis but when holly trees are young they do benefit from a light shearing in the late winter before the tips begin to grow. This helps the trees to become denser and helps to create faster privacy.
If holly trees begin to outgrow their area in the garden or the base becomes too wide, they can be limbed up at the base to create a more tree-like appearance.
Are Holly Trees Deer Resistant?
Holly tree varieties are frequently included on all deer-resistant plant lists. Some hollies resist deer better than others. One of the most deer-resistant varieties of holly is American holly or Ilex opaca. This Native Holly resists even the hungriest of deer.
Are Holly Berries Poisonous?
Many people use Hollies as holiday decorations. The leaves and branches of the holly tree are safe and non-toxic but the berries are poisonous to people and pets and care should be taken if used as decorations in homes with pets and small children.