Holly, Carissa

S & J Nursery’s Guide to Growing

Carissa Holly

for Northeast Florida Jacksonville

| St. Augustine area Landscapes

(Ilex Cornuta Carissa )

Carissa Holly foliage up close

Carissa Holly Preferred Exposure:

– Carissa Holly prefers a full sun to partial shade location in the North Florida | Jacksonville | St. Augustine area landscapes.

Carissa Holly Foliage:

– Deep dark and glossy  green foliage of the Carissa Holly
has a neat tidy appearance and a single spine on each leaf tip.

Carissa Holly Soil Preference / Salt tolerance:

– Holly plants prefer rich, well drained slightly acid soils but is widely tolerant of a wide range of soil conditions including sand, clay, loam, extended flooding zones, even well drained non irrigated soils

-Salt tolerance low to medium

Carissa Holly Size Variance:

– Dwarf Burfordii Holly can reach sizes of 3-4+ feet High | 4-6+ feet Wide but is easily maintained as low as 2 ft with just annual pruning.

Carissa Holly Growth Habit:

– Carissa Holly has a rounded growth habit and needs little or no pruning to keep its shape.

Carissa Holly Growth Rate:

– Carissa Holly is a slow growing landscape selection, it may require a little
patience to get it to the size you would like it to be but once it gets there it only takes a once a year trim to keep it looking great!

Carissa Holly Bloom:

-This plant rarely blooms and although I have never actually seen it happen it is said that it will occasionally have clusters of small white flowers are not very showy in the summer but are followed in fall by clusters of berries that turn a bright Christmas red color. If you want a holly for annual berry production, this is not it! Its planted more for its low mature height and slow growth rate.

Carissa Holly Water Requirements:

– Carissa Holly is drought tolerant once established into the landscape and requires very little attention to daily watering except when first being planted from the nursery containers into the landscape, especially during North Florida | Jacksonville | St. Augustine area’s hot summer months.

– Carissa Hollys are an ideal planting for areas that will receive little to no
supplemental irrigation.

Butterfly or Bird Attracting:

– Carissa Hollys do not attract wildlife to the landscape.

Best Uses For Carissa Holly:

– Carissa Holly make a great choice for a low growing hedge or lower layer of foundation planting for homes or commercial buildings.

– Few pest or disease problems in the North Florida | Jacksonville | St. Augustine area landscapes.

Care of S & J Nursery’s North Florida | Jacksonville | St. Augustine Shrubs:

– Shrubs can be planted in the North Florida | Jacksonville | St. Augustine area at any time during the year. In normal and well draining soils dig the hole as deep as the root ball and two to three times as wide. Plant the top of the root ball level or slightly higher than the surrounding soils. When planting in poorly drained soils make sure to plant your shrubs a minimum of 3 inches ABOVE the surrounding soil level.

– Water every day during the establishment period. For most 3 gallon size shrubs in the North Florida landscape in average soil, that is neither heavy clay that holds water or really sandy that will take 2-3 weeks of daily watering to ensure that your newly planted shrub will begin to put out new roots and grow into its new home happily. After the first few weeks begin tapering back your watering to every other day then every third day and so on until your newly planted items are flourishing without your assistance.

– If planting larger shrubs you may need to extend the initial care a bit longer to protect your investment and get your shrubs off to the best start possible.

– IMPORTANT: If planting shrubs in heavy clay soils that hold allot of water after a rain or irrigating, remember to check the soil for moisture by sticking your fingers into the soil near the root ball of the newly planted shrub down to 2-3 inches. If it remains wet from the previous watering wait for the top 2-3 inches to dry out before watering again.

– IMPORTANT: When planting shrubs into poor sandy soils be sure to amend the planting hole by mixing compost or cow manure etc. with the native soil that will go back in the hole around the new plants root ball when installing your shrub material, this will not only give your new shrubs good soil to grow its new roots into but help it hold water.

– When planting shrubs from containers be sure to loosen the roots as much as possible pulling loose roots away from the root ball before installing your new plants, if the roots are to tight to easily loosen with your hands use a knife to cut a few slits into the root ball being careful to go all the way from the top to the bottom and making the cut at least an inch deep. This will ensure that your plant will immediately begin to form new roots into its new surrounding soil.

– Mulch newly planted shrubs whenever possible.

– Fertilize each spring with a mixture of Milorganite and a slow release poly coated plant food such as Osmocote or Stay Green general purpose plant food, sprinkling the fertilizer around the mulch circle underneath the foliage of the tree

– Prune as needed to shape each spring and or summer.