Holly is one of my favorite Christmas plants. It’s beautiful in the winter outdoor garden, and it also adds some beautiful red and green color to indoor decorations this time of year. I love holly’s waxy green leaves and beautiful red berries.
Legend says holly helps to ward of bad spirits, that’s where the tradition to add holly to holiday decorations began. Many believed that a sprig or two of holly added to the door, or entryway would help keep evil out of the house. So add a couple sprigs of holly to a wreath, a vase, or a table centerpiece for beautiful red and green holiday cheer (and to keep the dark side away).
Holly berry bushes are easy to grow, and can provide you with several snips of holly this time of year without anyone even noticing there are branches missing. I have my holly planted along the sunny side of the house, and they seem to do fairly well there. If you plant holly it’s a good practice to plant more than one. Holly berry has male and female plants, and only the females produce berries.
So how do you tell the difference between male and female holly? You can only reliably tell the difference in the spring when they’re blooming. A male holly plant produces flowers with yellow stamens in the center. The female holly has flowers with a fat green center. Planting several holly bushes will increase the chances that you have both male and female plants for the beautiful winter berries.
I love my holly berry bush:-)
Image(c) L Gerlach