How to Plant Blue Holly


Easy to grow in a wide variety of weather zones, blue holly, also known as the Meserve family of holly, will grow especially well when given the right start. The time spent preparing the soil for the holly will reap great rewards for years to come with a strong, healthy plant. Choosing the right location for a blue holly is also critical, and a holly planted in the right location the right way will require only minimal care over its lifetime.

Step 1

Choose a site for your blue holly that is protected from wind and strong sunlight but one that receives at least partial sun throughout the day.

Step 2

Dig out a small bed for the holly, making the bed about three times as wide as the holly.

Step 3

Mix compost with the soil removed from the bed, adding equal amounts of compost to the soil. Make sure the soil is broken up and loose.

Step 4

Fill the bed with the soil and compost mixture.

Step 5

Dig a hole for the blue holly in the center of the bed. The hole should be about 1 1/2 times as deep as the root ball and 1 1/2 times as wide as the holly.

Step 6

Backfill the hole with soil and compost so that when the holly is placed in the hole, about 2 inches of the root ball will sit above the soil line.

Step 7

Fill a bucket or large container with water.

Step 8

Place the holly, still in its pot or container, in the water and make sure the entire root ball is submerged.

Step 9

Wait at least 15 minutes or until the holly sinks.

Step 10

Remove the blue holly from the water and gently from the pot or container, taking care not to damage or disturb the roots.

Step 11

Place the holly in the hole and gently fill the hole with a mixture of soil and compost. Tamp or pack the soil lightly with your hands as you fill the hole. Do not step on the dirt to tamp it.

Step 12

Water the plant thoroughly.

Step 13

Place a layer of bark mulch around the holly, lightly covering the top of the root ball.

Tips and Warnings

  • Don't plant blue holly where they are easily accessible by children. They may be tempted to eat the poisonous berries.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel


  • Ohio State University Extension: Broad-Leaved Evergreens (Planting)
  • University of Rhode Island Horticulture Program: Hollies
Keywords: plant blue holly, how to plant a blue holly bush, planting meserve or blue holly plants

About this Author

Carlye Jones is a journalist, freelance writer, photographer and novelist, with more than 15 years of experience. She enjoys sharing her expertise on home improvements, interior decorating, photography, gardening and traveling. Her work has appeared both in print and on numerous websites, such as Matador Travel. Carlye received her training at Northern Arizona University.