Dahoon Holly – Losing Leaves?

Q: I’ve had a dahoon holly for four years and it has been doing fine. Three weeks ago it started dropping its leaves. I was out of town for two weeks and when I came home it was naked. My husband said that while I was gone we didn’t have any rain, but the tree gets watered by drip irrigation three times a week for twelve minutes.

A:I can only theorize that the holly became too dry or that some sort of damage was done to the base of the trunk. Dahoon holly does best on moist soils: swamps are its native environment. It can tolerate drier locations with regular watering, but often has a thin crown in this environment. While it’s not best for Florida, the bright red berries it sports in the northern half of Georgia make it an excellent plant for winter interest.

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