Holly Bushes

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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Covington, Georgia
#1
Not sure where to post this but I have a question about Holly Bushes.

We have a row of them across the front porch and want to get rid of them and I have heard they are extremely hard to :

1) Dig up
2) Kill the root system

Does anyone out there in pool land know if this is true or not OR have any suggestions how to get rid of them??
 

AnnaK

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#2
We have/had numerous hollies, the stickery kind. Hate'em! They can be difficult to get rid of. You can chainsaw them to the ground and six weeks later the stump will grow new branches.

Our approach has been to cut the main trunk at ground level, then cut as many of the roots going off in all directions as we could, severing the sprawling root system from the main trunk. They don't grow very deep and it's possible to remove the trunk and main root. You can also drill a hole into the main trunk after you've cut the bush off and fill it with Roundup or stump killer (I don't know the official name) or, cheapest and greenest, table salt. Because the wood is soft you can use a large bore drill bit to make the hole, going as deep as you can, then pour salt in it.

Our best success was when we severed the side roots from the main trunk.
 

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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#3
AnnaK,

What did you cut the side roots with ,an axe? Last night I cut the bush part off and now have to figure out how to get the stumps out. I am going to put a planter box where the holly was so we dont need it growing back anytime soon !
 

AnnaK

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#4
We used gas powered chainsaw on some of them. On some others, the long-handled secaturs worked because the roots weren't very thick and it is pretty soft wood.

If you don't sever the side roots from the trunk the darn things will spout up within a few weeks at some distance from the original plant.
 

crabboy

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Jul 24, 2007
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Suwanee, GA
#5
As already suggested you should drill some holes in the trunk and pour undiluted Roundup into the holes. This will prevent it from coming back. There are specific instructions on how to us Roundup for stumps on the bottle.
 

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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Covington, Georgia
#6
WOW ! I must have got lucky .... It only took me 1.5 hours to dig out 4 Holly bush stumps. Man those roots are long! Some go back under the front porch. What do you suggest doing to keep the roots from growing back ?
 

AnnaK

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#7
Good for you!

Cut as many roots off the main root as you can find. Pull up what you can and cut somewhere between it and the main. On their own they won't send up shoots because they're not getting any nutrients when you separate them from their life support system.

ETA: I just realized you might be asking about the main root left after you dug up the stump. Pull up as much as you can. The farthest distance from the main trunk we've ever had new branches come up was 8 or so inches and they grew off of roots that were still attached to the trunk root. We did not get regrowth on those where we dug the stump out even though there was still root tissue left in the ground.
 

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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Covington, Georgia
#8
I will try to get as much of the main roots as i can. Some run up under the front porch of the house. I cut the larger roots in several places and pulled those out. Should I still spray Round Up all over the area. Just wondered if it would help kill the roots? As I said we want to put in a raised flower bed and I really dont want Holly sprouts pushing up through the new beds. :shock:
 

AnnaK

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#9
I tend to be very conservative with Roundup. My approach now would be to put landscape fabric down and then build and fill the raised beds. I think you've done a good job separating and pulling the roots and I suspect those bushes are history.
 

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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Covington, Georgia
#12
AnnaK,

I thought you might like to see how the Holy Bush removal turned out ..


Before bush removal


After removal


Another view after removal


Starting planter


Finished product


Took about a week to do working on it after work for 4 hours each night. We put Gardenias in the back where the Holly bushes would have been and in the front planter we did towards the back Gaillardias and Shasta Daisy's up front.
 

AnnaK

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#13
That came out so very pretty! I know you put a lot of sweaty work into it. The one root you dug up is evidence of that.

The new planters are gorgeous! How did you hold the pieces of wood together? We built a raised bed like that 10 years ago and it is now coming apart with the wood bending and bowing out. I'm always looking for new ideas.

Betcha those hollies are history!
 

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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Covington, Georgia
#14
There is still a Holly bush to the left of the steps I will get rid of soon. I have started on another project out by the pool ( another major part of my "honey do" list). We are closing off the front of the deck below the pool so you cant see underneath it (the deck) from the house. I will take pictures of that project and post them for you to see to have more ideas if you wish?

As far as the planters go, I used landscape timbers of course. Dig the ground out under the first timber so it will be level. Then what I did was took a drill and drilled 1/2" hole in each end (on the flat side) and beat a piece of 1/2" x 2ft long pc of rebar through the hole into the ground to stop it from moving. You can do one in the middle too if you want to but you would be surprised how steady it gets with the pc on each end.

Then I used 4" screws to screw the next pc to the first and so on until I acieived the height we needed.The planter nearest the porch in the back had to be built off level because of the concrete they poured for the posts wasnt below ground level so I added 2 more on the front side (which IS level)so it wasnt noticeable from the rest of the yard .... but I know it :wink:

Sorry this seems so long and I am rambling :lol:

After that its just like building a log cabin if you know how they are done by over lapping the corners to lock everything in. I could take some pictures of the corners if you wanted and send them to you so you can see what im refering to? If hubby is good with a chop saw and is able to figure out angles then you can do almost any shape you want to. I did a smaller one out back around the AC unit I will take a pic of and send you so you can see the shape of that one and how it turned out.
 

TizMe

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Aug 26, 2007
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Covington, Georgia
#16
Ok AnnaK here are the pictures I was telling you about e few days ago. The first set is how the corners look on the flower beds.


This shows how the corners overlap


Flower bed around AC unit



Pool project. Almost completed. I have to cut 2 pcs of wood down tomorrow at work and nail them up.

Under pool deck before


Start of closing in under the deck


Almost done except for a few pcs at the top