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Holly Bushes

Q.Black Mite/Flies on My Standard Holly

Anonymous added on July 27, 2011 | Answered

I have a standard holly, which I kept in a large terra cotta tub for 15 years in my back garden without any problems at all, until it started to look a bit forlorn. I assumed it was getting pot-bound and removed it to my front garden and planted in the ground. I gave it lots of compost and kept feeding it throughout the early days of the re-siting. It now seems to have got some kind of very small black mite/fly all over it, and the branches seem to be dying off. I have sprayed with a proprietry insect killer for shrubs and roses, but it doesn’t seem to be recovering. I would hate to lose this shrub, as we have cherished it for so long. It had a very nice big shape to the bush, and we even nicknamed it Tina Turner (big bushy head of hair). Any sugggstions/ideas as to what I can do please?

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on July 28, 2011

I would recommend trying neem oil. It is effective against both harmful insects and mites and fungus. The product you used may not have been effective against mites. Neem oil will work on all three things that may be causing the continued decline of the shrub.

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