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How to make a holly hedgerow?

Chris MasonChris Mason Posts: 159


Hello, today I bought two hollies (Ilex aquifolium) they're tall-ish (same height as me- 5.5ft)  how exactly can I turn these thin hollies into more of a shrubby type hedgerow?(the bigger they get the better!) 

  I was told to cut the main stalk back 5-ish inches next spring when it's more established and to also cut some of the branches back a few inches so it sends out new shoots thus making it bushier    At the moment I have two but I'm probably going to plant one perhaps two extras next year.   If I follow the advice given would I get something that I'm looking for?  Thank you


  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114
    How do you get male plants with berries and female plants without? Or do you just mean some of their names are the wrong way round?
  • When it comes to Holly varieties, they grow so slowly that the names are already chosen long before they show flowers, it can take three or four years to show flowers so picking names is essentially a guessing game.

  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 21,887

    I've found that different varieties have different growing habits and that this can affect the results of pruning. Some are naturally dense and bushy. Others grow leggy and are quite sparsely covered in leaves. I have pruned the common green holly with no problems but two years ago a variegated holly which was about 8 feet tall got broken off to 6 feet tall when a tree branch fell onto it. The holly has yet to recover and looks very odd. Hatracking is, I think, the name for severely pruning established hollies in order to improve their shape. Mine looks exactly like a hatrack 2 years after the accident.

    So variety may affect the outcome of your project.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • I have five planted in a loose hedge in my garden. If I want them as a six foot hedge, should I wait till they get to this height and nip the top off or do it now so they bush out and continue to grow?

  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 21,887

    Looking at what has happened to mine, I'd let them get to the height you want and then prune them. But I could be wrong.image

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • Chris MasonChris Mason Posts: 159

    Tetley-I know, smaller plants are quicker to establish than bigger ones, I personoy wanted ones half the size but the size I got was simply all the had. I have heavy clay soil and when I planted I mixed in some composted bark, I haven't used any fertilisers as I don't have any but I'll make sure to get some blood/fish/bone, would sea weed extract be any good? I have fertilisers of that as a liquid fertiliser. 

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