American Holly Bushes

Pruning My American Holly Suckers

Nancy Dashiell added on February 8, 2014 | Answered

I had an old American Holly tree cut down. I was told that the suckers from the stump would form a Holly bush if I left them in place. Is this true? How long would it take to grow a bunch of suckers? How would I prune these suckers to make them bushier?

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on February 11, 2014

Yes, you can grow a new plant from the suckers, provided the plant was not a graft. It is unusual for hollies to be grafted, so you should be ok.

Select a few of the strongest looking suckers and prune out all the rest. Then allow the suckers to grow. As long as you are cultivating just a few of the strongest, they should fill out on their own and you can treat them as you would a small "normal" holly. No need to prune until they are at the desired height.

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