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Is my holly sick?

BlueBirderBlueBirder Posts: 212
My holly has dropped most of its lower leaves this winter. The ones that remain look fairly healthy but some of the stems are going black. There's nothing actually on the surface of the stems (as I guess there would be with sooty mould). Does anyone know what's up? 


  • LiriodendronLiriodendron Posts: 8,268
    I'm afraid it might be...  I found this on the Internet:

    I haven't personal experience of holly diseases but hopefully someone will come along who has.  But phytophthora infections are unfortunately quite common on various species, and tend to result in dieback, as seen in your holly...
    Since 2019 I've lived in east Clare, in the west of Ireland.
  • BlueBirderBlueBirder Posts: 212
    Thank you for replying so quickly. I had a quick google and I think this holly leaf blight is the culprit. I will remove the infected stems and leaves, and replace the top layer of compost. Fingers crossed it will recover - it's a favourite of mine! 
  • RedwingRedwing Posts: 1,458
    With holly you can cut hard back and it will regrow.  Don't be afraid of severe pruning.  I once cut mature holly back to about 30cm and it sprouted from low down in spring.
    Based in Sussex, I garden to encourage as many birds to my garden as possible.
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