London (change)
11 messages
18/11/2012 at 12:15

I have a lovely holly bush in its second year, which is growing well but this year there are still no berries showing. It had a few on it when I planted it last autumn. So what have I done wrong? Or is there still time for them to come through. It is an Ilex Aquifolium 'Alaska'. Any helpful comments gratefully received.

Claba, Grantham, Lincolnshire.

18/11/2012 at 13:26

If there aren't any green ones now, you won't get any red ones later. I have a poor year for holly berries this year. Summer 2012 to blame again?

18/11/2012 at 13:27

if as the name suggests,hollies are female or male,if you have a male no berries,if female berries but you have to have a male holly to make berries unless its one of those self fertilizing ones.

18/11/2012 at 13:35

Good point. One is not really going to make it on its own is it. Though there are some that can. 'JC van Tol', (might not be the exact name but close), will berry on its own.

18/11/2012 at 14:11

Alaska is self fertile so doesn't need pollen from a male holly to set seed, but if the weather was wet and cold at flowering time that would probably explain the lack of berries.  Hopefully we'll have a better year in 2013 

18/11/2012 at 14:15

Have you ever had berries from it? Were there any signs of flowers earlier in the year? Just wondering if you have a male tree - if that is the case, then no berries ever.  If unsure, try planting a female tree near at hand (if you have room for another), something like Golden King ( which, in spite of it's name, is a female), or any other female tree that takes your fancy.  

We have several holly trees at the bottom of our garden, including Golden Queen, which is a male - just to confuse the issue!!  You do need both with in a fairly small area to flower and berry well - we have quite a good crop of berries this year, which rather surprises me considering the dreadfully cold spring we had when the pollinators shoud have been about.  If your tree is female and a neighbour has a male then you should get berries - even the so called self fertile ones do better with a male for pollination. 

18/11/2012 at 15:13

The original post mentions that it had berries on when planted last autumn 

18/11/2012 at 15:49

Sorry to sound so boring Dove, but my neighbour says it,s the weather(again!!)

I have three in my garden and have had berry laden trees for a few years. This year only two have some berries on them and the wood pigeons are already feasting on them. I hope they leave some for the red wings which come a bit later in the year. They are such a pleasant sight as they are very gregarious like the starling and only visit once a year. I hope 2013 is a good year for your holly tree Dove.

18/11/2012 at 15:52
jatnikapyar wrote (see)

Sorry to sound so boring Dove, ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,. I hope 2013 is a good year for your holly tree Dove.

  It's not me - I don't have a holly in this garden .............. yet 

18/11/2012 at 21:17

Thats wonderful, thanks for your comments. It had some berries on it when i bought it last Autumn. I thought it would be alright. Maybe it was weather no flowers on it at all. Perhaps I could squeeze in a male as they are great for keeping the cats off the corners of the garden. I also have a variegated one got recently, so a male would only help. How close does it have to be????  

20/11/2012 at 20:10

Anywhere in your garden will be fine - the bees will fly from one to the other. 

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