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Holly

Holly bushes are abundant across the country. They add interest and a splash of color during winter and act as good green backdrops in the summer months. Only the female plant American Holly can produce the berries. Make sure to plant a male variety nearby to grow berries.

Chewed Leaves

In holly bushes, chewed leaves are often caused by:

  • Deer Browsing

Dead Leaf Spots

Holly dead leaf spots are often caused by:

  • Tar Spot
  • Spine Spot

Defoliation

Leaf defoliation is commonly seen during early spring on Holly plants that suffered from freezing injuries brought about by winter. The frozen ground and soil can cause Holly plants to defoliate to try and preserve water, and the dry winds and bright sun reflecting off the snow can cause leaf scorch, too. Black root rot is a common cause of leaf defoliation in holly plants.

Dieback/Flagging

Holly dieback/flagging is often caused by:

  • Phytophthora Rot
  • Black Root Rot

The Thielaviopsis basicola is a type of fungus that can cause black root rot and branch dieback on Holly plants.

Moldy Leaves

Moldy leaves on holly shrubs are often caused by:

  • Camellia Scale
  • Holly Wax Scale

Sawdust/Holes

Holly sawdust/holes are often caused by:

  • Sapsucker (Bird)

Wilting

Holly wilting is often caused by:

  • Rodent Damage

Yellowing/Browning

Yellowing can be indicative of black root rot brought about by the Thielaviopsis basicola fungi or Phytophthora rot.

Yellowing Holly leaves can be indicative of iron deficiency. If a leaf does not get enough iron, it cannot produce chlorophyll to make the leaves green. Iron deficiency on the shrub may be caused by overwatering or poor soil drainage. 

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