November 6, 2020

A long time coming - berries on the largest holly tree

For years I've wondered if any of the holly trees would ever get berries. I knew that berries only form on old growth, so pruning is not recommended if you want to get berries. I also knew that hollies have both male and female plants, and the berries form on the female trees. This is the first year any of the hollies have produced berries, and it's only on the largest tree.

I didn't plant any of the fourteen holly trees on the manor. A lifetime ago, my grandfather purchased a male and a female holly and planted it in the lower corner of his yard. A walk through the nearby woods will show a person just how prolific those parent trees were. I'm sure my hollies are their progeny. 

When he purchased the home place, my cousin felled the holly trees. Holly trees can live well over 100 years and these two were probably about seventy and beginning to show their age. Even a light snow caused branches to break. We didn't want to wake up one morning and find our shared lane blocked by a fallen tree, and so I reluctantly agreed they had to come down at a time of our choosing. By then, I already had young, established trees. 

Will we have a little holly "baby boom" on the manor? It wouldn't be a bad thing. It would give me the chance to transplant a few young trees along the western stone fence to grow as a barrier to a neighbor who thinks target shooting into my hillside is okay. It's not. 

All we can do now is wait and see. Mother Nature can't be rushed.

The Lady of Holly Tree Manor

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