The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

United Kingdom Gb

I moved a holly bush early December. It's now late February. Risky move to dig it up and replant it. It's leaves have started to go brown. I know sometimes the trauma of moving a holly bush can make it shed its leaves. I was wondering if I could have killed it? Or do you think that as its now 3 months since I replanted it, it may survive.
It's about 8 foot tall. I used a mini digger to move it.
Many thanks



I wish you'd said where you are in the UK - if you're south of the midlands, water will be the answer - we're 40% down on rainfall currently, and from an inspection of one of my beds today, it's already too dry even at the end of winter. If you're somewhere that might be true, I'd run the hose on a trickle at the base of the plant for an hour, every 6 days - while you can, before the hosepipe ban comes in. If you're not somewhere that applies, then its likely you damaged roots when you moved it - hopefully some of the plant will recover and grow on.

23 Feb, 2012


Thanks for that. I'm near hull so north of the midlands. The soil did look dry when I looked. I put some compost on the soil and watered it in. I'll continue to water and see if that works. I hope it won't die as it is ( or should I say- was) a beautiful tree. X

23 Feb, 2012


Rachfran when you moved using the mini digger did you make sure to get as much of the roots as possible, especially the tap root which sources water from much lower down.

Our female holly had a rough time the winter of 2010/11 with the very cold weather coming in November whilst the sap was still up. We had to cut it back almost to the ground but it is growing away strongly and we are hoping there will be flowers this year for the male tree to pollenate.

23 Feb, 2012


Yes, we got as much as we not sure what the tap root would look like but there was plenty of soil around the root system when we dug it up.
I was wondering that if it has lived this long- is it still possible for it to die? I have a feeling I'm going to have to prune it back but don't want to add another trauma to it, so may wait for that but not sure how long I should wait.
Thank you for your advice. I really don't have a clue with gardening and I'm hoping my first project hasn't resulted in killing this lovely tree!

24 Feb, 2012


Well, personally, I would never have attempted to move an 8 foot holly but having done so you do need to keep it watered. The tap root is the one that goes straight down to anchor the bush. at 8 foot I would estimate that the bush was at least 10 and possibly 15 years old and trees/bushes of that age don't always take kindly to being dug up.

Another thought is how well did you prepare the planting hole and did you put and compost in it?

24 Feb, 2012

How do I say thanks?

Answer question


Not found an answer?