Burford Holly Bushes

Burford Hollies

karenlharding added on October 20, 2015 | Answered

I have 2 Burford hollies by my front door. They are both in full sun at the top of a slope. They were planted 13 years ago and for the past 5 or 6 years, one of them has been sending out lots of shoots which are coming up all around the base of the Burfords. For a while, I was pulling them up but now there are so many. My landscapers are using their line trimmers (edge trimmers) to keep them from growing too tall. Can you tell me why the tree is sending out these shoots and what can I do to stop this from happening? (The other Burford, which is on the other side of the path, doesn't have this issue.) Thanks for your help! Karen

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on October 21, 2015

Holly have a tap root and an extensive lateral root system.

They will send up shoots from this lateral root system.

There is little to be done except remove the shoots as soon as possible. Cutting down into the roots with a sharp shovel may cut the root system more sharply and reduce them from growing back as quickly.

You can try adding some water to the plant and adding 2 to 3 inches of mulch to aide in moisture retention.

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