Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A Neglected Beauty ... Holly Blooms

Who knew they were this pretty? (Be sure to click through to the larger version.) I have to admit, I don't usually pay much attention to the Holly Blooms when they arrive in mid-spring, and generally just make a mental note along the lines of, oh, we'll have lots of berries this fall, and pretty much leave it at that. We've both tried a few macro shots in the past, but never have had much luck ... until the arrival of the S700 this year. Last week Fernymoss took another stab at shooting up close and hit pay dirt this time (so to speak). I never imagined they were so pretty --and inviting to insects-- but here they are! Quite lovely, I think ... and I'll pay closer attention to them in the future for sure. I think a lot of gardeners who grow 'Blue Princess' Holly (Ilex meserveae) probably pay much more attention to the brilliant red fall berries than the spring flowers. We've certainly been guilty of that offense! So here's my argument for getting up closer and really appreciating what they're doing to reward us with those lovely berries in the fall (which in our garden do seem to serve as a food source for certain winter birds) to brighten our Holiday decorations (though we hardly cut much at that time, mostly just leggy looking branches).

If you've been wanting to grow Holly and haven't yet tried it, a few words of advice: avoid direct sun and plant it in a nicely organic loam, not super rich, nor poor or rocky, where they will stay moderately moist in the hottest months of the summer, and you should be able to keep them happy. We have three bushes planted in our Woodland Garden on the north side (2 females and 1 male) where they get a few hours of indirect east and west sun during the day. Just bright enough that they can grow vigorously, but not intense enough to toast them in the sun. It also helps to make sure you have at least one male and female plant (they're usually identified as 'Blue Prince' or 'Blue Princess' at garden centers) planted not too far away if you want to have berries in the fall/winter. Though I've heard of self-pollinating varieties, I know nothing about them or whether they really can pollinate themselves. When we put these in (in Spring, 1999), the only options were to buy both male and female plants to achieve pollination, thus berries. Once you've got your hollies all planted and situated, be prepared to be very patient, because they are initially very slow growers and may spend the first couple of years looking like they've barely grown at all. This is actually a bit of a mixed blessing, because Holly can grow very tall (up to 10-12 feet at maturity!) and they're a lot easier to manage while they stay relatively small and compact. I'd guess that over the nine years they've been in our garden, they have put on perhaps about 3 feet, (they were about a foot tall when planted), and though they've lost some branches the last couple of winters, due to ice storms and heavy snows. Other than that, they've been really tough troopers in the shade garden and continue to reward us all year round with their evergreen interest and attractive berries.

I can't emphasize enough how much they will suffer in direct sun. My sister has been trying to grow one for years (longer than us) and it continues to struggle because of its position, at the edge of her garden (though under a small maple) in a full Southern exposure. I just told her (again) last weekend that it's getting cooked and wants more shade because it looks "toasty" and never produces berries. It's a good thing she doesn't read this blog, because I think the only solution for her is to buy a male and female and plant them in full shade all over again ... Yeah, that's harsh, but sometimes my didactic side comes out strongly about certain plants. At least I finally got her to quit planting Bleeding Hearts in full sun and move them to shade ... now she raves about how well they do! I'm really happy for her on that one ... now if I could convince her about the Holly, lol.

One minor quibble with the Missouri Botanical Garden link above: they say full sun to part shade, to which I say, with our fiercely hot summers, full sun is out of the question if you want them to do well. Maybe it's just the soil where we have them, but the few morning and afternoon hours of indirect sun seem to suit them quite well.

33 comments:

FARfetched said...

I remember reading that there are over 400 varieties of holly. Some of them do quite well in sunny locations, as I can attest — one or two varieties (of the four or five planted around FAR Manor) have attained weed status, and even pest status. Transplanting them is an iffy proposition; sometimes they take hold and sometimes they don't.

Some hollies are bushy, and some grow up to be full-blown trees. We have one holly along the driveway that we have to cut back every couple of years, because it wants to reach out and pet passing cars — the bees were swarming it a month ago. Now they're in the boxwoods.

boran2 said...

We had Holly growing up, but have none here at my house. It's actually been a while since I've seen one. I'll have to check out the local nursery to see what they have. Another nice close up, IVG.

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hey FAR, good point about the number of varieties! I was referring just to the 'Blue Prince/Princess' variety since that's the only kind we've attempted (and my sister is trying). The number of forms seems really varied as well from the upright to shrubby kinds. There's one we've been interested in that is a full sun variety, called 'Sky Pencil' that grows straight up (like a pencil, thus the clever name)and supposedly rarely needs pruning. I think it's cool because of the architectural look and the fact that no maintenance is really needed once established!

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Oh, and FAR ... I suspect your weed status might have something to do with your warm climate? I've never heard of them getting that aggressive here, but it probably depends on the variety as well. Do you think yours are spreading by seeds or some kind of runner?

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi B2! If you've got the space for one, they make a great addition to the garden! Nothing like something nice and green all winter, covered with snow sometimes... quite seasonal, so to speak. :-)

FARfetched said...

I'm pretty sure they're spreading because the birds grab berries & s(p)it the seeds wherever.

Sky Pencil? What a funny name! We have a few hollies out back that go straight up for 3-4 feet, then… well, it's like the little umbrellas they put in certain drinks. There's a pic in an older post of them blooming out in January. The blooms/berries start out yellow, then turn purple and fell off a couple weeks ago.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

It's true, you never see photos of Holly flowers, only the berries, but the flowers are charming. There was 1 Holly here when I bought my house, but it wasn't happy & died after a few years. I'm not ready to try another one.

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hey, FAR, those are some different hollies you have down there from what's hardy up our way. Yellow berries to purple? Wow. Ours will come on in summer and then turn to red in the fall and they stay on the plant pretty well until winter. I also noticed that the leaves on yours look a lot larger than the ones Blue Prince/Princess has and I'd be curious to know which species you have (if you know, of course!)

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Hi MMD ... too bad your holly didn't make it because they really are encouraging in the winter months! But with everything you have growing at your place, it looks like you have more than your hands full! But isn't that the fate of all of us obsessive gardeners? So many cool plants, so little space and time!

Anonymous said...

sexy free teen anime pornstars porn
woman cop sex
bikini girl masturbates
young teens in thongs
naked womans


[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/index.html]fucking whore[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/sitemap.html]get fucking whore[/URL]

[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/bbw-woman-fucking.html]bbw woman fucking[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/hot-celebrities-acteress.html]hot celebrities acteress[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/trixie-chicks.html]trixie chicks[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/wife-fucks-pornstars-cock.html]wife fucks pornstars cock[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/german-pornstars-video-download.html]german pornstars video download[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/pussy-slip.html]pussy slip[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/older-woman-upskirt.html]older woman upskirt[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/any-information-on-deaths-of-celebrities.html]any information on deaths of celebrities[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/listed-indian-pornstars.html]listed indian pornstars[/URL]
[URL=http://madsextapes.servik.com/doggiestyle-big-tits-sex-video-fuck.html]doggiestyle big tits sex video fuck[/URL]

Anonymous said...

brittany burke lesbian x
heather brooke free blowjob movie
free male cocks of celebrities
mature woman and younger girls
teen interracial dating


[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/index.html]mature creampie video[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/sitemap.html]hot mature creampie video[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/send-myself-over-the-edge-clit.html]send myself over the edge clit[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/uk-teen-chat.html]uk teen chat[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/just-nudes-only-amputies.html]just nudes only amputies[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/brood-bitch.html]brood bitch[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/milf-nude-pics.html]milf nude pics[/URL]

Anonymous said...

8th street latina pussy
gatsby's pub strip club list
milf rubs her clit
teacher and lesbian teen girl
womans private strip


[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/index.html]mature creampie video[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/sitemap.html]hot mature creampie video[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/woman-nude-portraits.html]woman nude portraits[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/celebrity-birthday-april-7.html]celebrity birthday april 7[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/milf-screaming.html]milf screaming[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/pragnat-chicks.html]pragnat chicks[/URL]
[URL=http://lipslickers.servik.com/viva-hot-babes-bulaklak-mp3.html]viva hot babes bulaklak mp3[/URL]

Anonymous said...

Hi all
I'm Mary, 27 years old :)
I am looking for good man. If he exists...
I'm love sport and... Hope you understand

[img]http://loveepicentre.com/uploades/photos/30375.jpg[/img]

www.blogger.com is very interesting forum for me, so I think we have the same hobbies
So lets chat...
My e-mail is marypopovaks@gmail.com, Skype *
Send me your foto!

__
Added later:

This photography is corrupted, sorry!

Oh, and all my photos here:
http://loveepicentre.com/user/Popova

Anonymous said...

Hi all
I'm Mary, 27 years old :)
I am looking for good man. If he exists...
I'm love sport and... Hope you understand

[img]http://loveepicentre.com/uploades/photos/30375.jpg[/img]

www.blogger.com is very interesting forum for me, so I think we have the same hobbies
So lets chat...
My e-mail is marypopovaks@gmail.com, Skype *
Send me your foto!

__
Added later:

This photography is corrupted, sorry!

Oh, and all my photos here:
http://loveepicentre.com/user/Popova

Anonymous said...

[url=http://loveepicentre.com/faq.php][img]http://loveepicentre.com/uploades/photos/3.jpg[/img][/url]
why do some prefer interracial dating [url=http://loveepicentre.com/taketour.php]usa dating[/url] free sugar daddy dating
method for relative dating [url=http://loveepicentre.com/]who is ashley massaro dating[/url] pa dating service
dating rituals in korea [url=http://loveepicentre.com/]jill nicolini dating anthony[/url] rhus dating dogging

Anonymous said...

browser based dating games http://loveepicentre.com executive lesbian dating service experience comments

Anonymous said...

adult dating in phuket http://loveepicentre.com potassium-argon dating artifact trackback url closed

Anonymous said...

ebook stardoc http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/es/The-African-Origin-of-Civilization-Myth-or-Reality/p192981/ ebook money [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/Wonder-Women-Feminisms-and-Superheroes/p199315/]define ebook[/url] ebook of the month club

Anonymous said...

mask of atreus ebook http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/es/Hogar-y-Jard-n/c1030/ free ebook format [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/Deceptively-Delicious-Simple-Secrets-to-Get-Your-Kids-Eating-Good-Food/p212500/]data stucture free ebook[/url] think and grow rich ebook

Anonymous said...

airborn kennith oppel ebook http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/fr/Sciences-de-Gestion/c2068/ buy a nook ebook reader [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/Decision-Making-Support-Systems/p178416/]free ebook search engin[/url] ebook ebooks e

Anonymous said...

mansfield park ebook virginia http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/es/Network-Based-Information-Systems-First-International-Conference-NBIS-2007-Regensburg-Germany-September-3-7-2007-Proceedings-Lecture-Notes-in-Applications-incl-Internet-Web-and-HCI/p209528/ design methodology ebook [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/fr/The-Reversal/p12670/]ssi florida ebook[/url] the free ebook spot

Anonymous said...

1.8 lcd mp3 mp4 video ebook http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/fr/Coraline/p11548/ amy lansky ebook [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/Small-Business-and-Entrepreneurship/c1359/?page=2]all ebook[/url] ebook actionscript cookbook

Anonymous said...

conformed to his image ebook http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/de/Ubiquitous-Computing-Systems-Second-International-Symposium-UCS-Tokyo-Japan-November-8-9-2004-Revised-Selected-Papers-Lecture-Notes-in-Applications-incl-Internet-Web-and-HCI/p209875/ ebook software for pdb and pdf [url=http://audiobookscollection.co.uk/D-E-Rydeheard/m23517/]the elements of style ebook[/url] ebook websites for sale

Anonymous said...

ebook compiler word search http://audiobooksplanet.co.uk/fr/Vid-o-Tie-ins/c1393/ academic materials cd ebook [url=http://audiobooksplanet.co.uk/Jack-J-Phillips-In-Human-Resource-Management/m55720/]indiana jones ebook torrent[/url] animals make us human ebook download

Anonymous said...

the chase ebook torrent http://audiobooksworld.co.uk/fr/WRR11-Eye-of-the-Wolf/p25107/ wsi leader's ebook [url=http://audiobooksworld.co.uk/authors/?letter=Vo]libraries in the information age ebook[/url] straw mud bench ebook
[url=http://audiobooksworld.co.uk/Yasuo-Igarashi/m134451/][img]http://audiobooksworld.co.uk/image/7.gif[/img][/url]

Anonymous said...

wiring software download http://buyoem.co.uk/it/product-37357/Ultraleecher-Final-1-0 yahoo directory astrology software [url=http://buyoem.co.uk/product-35537/Default-Folder-X-4-4-MacOSX]best downloadable business card printing software[/url] masterworks software dde connection
[url=http://buyoem.co.uk/product-36772/Remo-File-Eraser-1-0]Remo File Eraser 1.0 - Software Store[/url] open source software synthesizer
[url=http://buyoem.co.uk/product-34255/SoftLogica-Recover-Disc-2-0][img]http://buyoem.co.uk/image/7.gif[/img][/url]

Anonymous said...

os x calendar software http://buyoemsoftware.co.uk/product-35984/OLFolders-3-2-x32 part number cross reference software [url=http://buyoemsoftware.co.uk/es/category-3/Gr-ficas-y-publicaci-n?page=2]best pc cleaner software[/url] administracion de software de ubuntu
[url=http://buyoemsoftware.co.uk/es/product-24957/Adobe-Master-Collection-CS4-Mac]Adobe Master Collection CS4 [Mac] - Cheap Legal OEM Software, Software Sale, Download OEM[/url] adobe software download fireworks
[url=http://buyoemsoftware.co.uk/de/product-36467/Active-To-Do-List-3-0][img]http://buyoem.co.uk/image/6.gif[/img][/url]

Anonymous said...

A persοn neсessarily asѕist to make cгitically posts Ι wοuld state.
That is the veгy first time I frequenteԁ your ωeb pagе and sο far?
I surprіsed ωith the analуѕis you made to mаke
this actual submit incredible. Great task!

Αlso visit mу homeρage - shopping

Anonymous said...

[url=http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/lanoxin.htm][img]http://onlinemedistore.com/4.jpg[/img][/url]
pharmacy compounding http://redbrickstore.co.uk/categories/anti-herpes.htm importance of computer in pharmacy practice [url=http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/dilantin.htm]vons pharmacy la mesa[/url]
l and s pharmacy http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/kamagra.htm best steroids pharmacy [url=http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/lotrisone.htm]lotrisone[/url]
university of iowa pharmacy school http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/lasuna.htm matt connell pharmacy director [url=http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/desyrel.htm]pharmacy jar antique[/url]
continuing pharmacy education and anatomy and physiology http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/coreg.htm sample letter of recommendation for pharmacy school [url=http://redbrickstore.co.uk/products/paroxetine.htm]paroxetine[/url]

Anonymous said...

[url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/lexapro.htm][img]http://onlinemedistore.com/4.jpg[/img][/url]
rated top pharmacy web sites http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/generic-imitrex.htm cvs pharmacy tampa online [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/uroxatral.htm]buy adderall online pharmacy foreign[/url]
new jersey phentermine pharmacy http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/deltasone.htm steroid pharmacy online [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/celexa.htm]celexa[/url]
canadian drug pharmacy http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/lasuna.htm pharmacy scholarships [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/rocaltrol.htm]pharmacy station elkhorn wisconsin[/url]
pharmacy license http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/plendil.htm westchester pharmacy [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/procalisx.htm]procalisx[/url]

Anonymous said...

[url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/catalogue/k.htm][img]http://onlinemedistore.com/10.jpg[/img][/url]
supreme pharmacy http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/dilantin.htm pharmacy 24 hour [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/rhinocort.htm]who makes more a dental assistant or pharmacy technician[/url]
bioscrip pharmacy indianapolis http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/categories/anti-herpes.htm marsh pharmacy [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/leukeran.htm]leukeran[/url]
comprehensive review of pharmacy practice http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/zetia.htm andrew heath pharmacy [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/purim.htm]take tennessee state pharmacy technician certification test[/url]
jeffrey kent lane mass college of pharmacy florida stockbroker http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/carafate.htm overseas pharmacy that will take paypal [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/antabuse.htm]antabuse[/url]

Anonymous said...

[url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/categories/anti-fungus.htm][img]http://onlinemedistore.com/7.jpg[/img][/url]
career day pharmacy http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/phenergan.htm cvs pharmacy texas [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/synthroid.htm]setting up online consulting pharmacy[/url]
online pharmacy valium http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/lopressor.htm acs pharmacy [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/viagra-soft-tabs.htm]viagra soft tabs[/url]
pharmacy technician resume samples http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/provera.htm walmart pharmacy bloomington mn [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/kamagra.htm]pharmacy benefit administration[/url]
example of a face sheet from pharmacy http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/mevacor.htm cvs pharmacy rockville va lifescan blood glucose meter [url=http://englandpharmacy.co.uk/products/dulcolax.htm]dulcolax[/url]

Anonymous said...

young gay teen boy dating websites http://loveepicentre.com/testimonials/ newest completely free online dating site
postcard dating vintage [url=http://loveepicentre.com/faq/]mate 2 go dating site[/url] dating free bend oregon
nikkixox dating [url=http://loveepicentre.com/map/]dating economists perspective[/url] dating anniversary e-cards [url=http://loveepicentre.com/user/fenav/]fenav[/url] 39532 dating sites