Opinions on Nellie R Stevens Holly

Booo(z7 East TN)June 26, 2004

Was wondering if anyone had any Nellie R Stevens Holly's

and if so, what your opinion is on them?



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Dancey(Zone 8b Texas)

I hope it's ok for a 'Southerner' to jump in here. ;) I have heard nothing but excellent reports on Nellie R. Stevens holly. Neil Sperry, who is a renown gardener from Texas A&M says it's probably the best. Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 26, 2004 at 3:04PM
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rosie(Deep South, USA 7A/B)

I planted one at my son's house about six years ago, and it looks wonderful and has been completely trouble free. Foliage is a very dark green, so it makes a nice contrast with the other shrubs and trees around, and it does a great job in all seasons of eliminating a view of a neighbor's bathroom window. I recently saw an old one, though, standing three stories tall and very wide, which made a lot more of an impression on me than the mere paper description of ultimate size did. We've planted ours much too close to the house.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2004 at 2:49PM
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GAAlan(z7b(on map) 8(imby) Atlanta)

I work in lawn maintenance and my company has a customer with a row of old Nellies on the property. These plants are all massive with the largest easily 40'. They always seem to have berries and flowers present. The plants look outstanding all year and they are never bothered by the climate. The only thing that detracts from their presence is the huge amount of falling dead leaves in spring. With plants as big as these are, the job of keeping the ground clean seems never ending. I have never seen a Nellie that didn't look great, but the normal spring leaf drop in a manicured situation presents ongoing work. Of course this is an issue with any broadleaf evergreen, they drop their oldest leaves eventually.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2004 at 12:46PM
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sdafamily(Z 6- tenn.)

does this holly tolorate cold weather? zone 6.. and 7 it gets 20 below here

    Bookmark   April 4, 2005 at 7:13PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

Does anyone know what the width of these are in say 20 years? I think we planted ours too close to the house also.....

    Bookmark   April 5, 2005 at 7:41AM
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LoraxDave(z7B Alabama)

Bumblebeez, my parents have a Nellie Stevens Holly on the side of their home in Atlanta, which is presumably as old as the house (22 years). It is as tall as their multi-level home, which must be at least 25 feet if not 30. I estimate the width is 8-12 feet. Theirs is fairly close to the foundation and should have been planted farther out away from the house, but it doesn't look too bad overall. Nellie Stevens Hollies look fine pruned if you want to keep it inbounds.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2005 at 6:06PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

Thanks! That's smaller than I was thinking and we have room for that size.
I have a hedge planted on one side of our house near the property line but still 25' or so from the house. I guess I'll have a shade garden over there eventually.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2005 at 10:01AM
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woody_ga(7a GA)

We moved our's last spring. It was on a corner and was too close. We were as careful as we could be, but ended up, after a couple of hours of digging, pulling it out with a truck! We were as gentle as we could be, but the tap root(s) were tough. Anyway, it has survived a summer and a winter in it's new spot and looks happy. I am too.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2005 at 2:56PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

If there is any problem with this plant, it's that people don't realize how big it wants to grow. The trunk and branches will become very large, too, making this plant the wrong choice as a typical foundation plant.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2005 at 5:53PM
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creatrix(z7 VA)

Even the "dwarf" Nellie gets around 10x10.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2005 at 8:48PM
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DoctorS(USDA 7)

Where can I go to get pictures/guidelines for how to prune my Nellie R. Stevens hollies (planted last year)? I don't want a formal, manicured look, but would like to keep a nice shape.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2005 at 5:19PM
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creatrix(z7 VA)

Here's a phamphlet about pruning-

Here is a link that might be useful: Va Tech Extension

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 8:29PM
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DoctorS(USDA 7)

THANKS! Great hints on pruning.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2005 at 3:57PM
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After listening to my local garden center advice, and having 10 leyland cypress die -- I've decided to ask for other opinions before planting again.

We have a shaded area (about 4 - 6 hours of intermittent sunlight in the summer and 4 - 6 hours of nearly direct sunlight in the winter) and need to plant a screen to hide the neighbor's area behind our yard. I think that the Nellie R Stevens hollies might do well in this area, but thought I'd ask for other opinions than my local garden center.

We put down soil conditioner with the leylands and the ground stays moist (we have the area mulched and we water as needed). Any other tips that you can provide for success this this plant would be great!

Thank you!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 4:02AM
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Dieter2NC(z7b NC)

Lyn, you might consider a raised planting of sasanqua camelias, most varieties will get 10'-15' tall and wide. It is a very adaptable plant as far as sunlight goes.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 9:09AM
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I just planted 10 rather large Nellie Stevens Holly trees/bushes ....thus the user name, achingback. They have have created the desired hedge to shield street side....Question ......two of the taller plants ( 6ft.) are heavy with berrys and shiny leafs ....the shorter plants (4ft.) have no berrys and a haze on the leafs that the seller said was caused by minerals deposited when watering. Should I be concerned about the health of these plants? Any thoughts? Thank You, Nancy

    Bookmark   October 4, 2007 at 9:44AM
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Are these the hollys that have hard prickly teethed leaves or the ones with soft pliable leaves?

    Bookmark   August 2, 2008 at 12:10AM
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How much do these Nellies grow when they are babies (2ft)? I was wanting a fast growing hedge. But I don't know what to plant. It has to be evergreen and dense and fast growing as I have a new road going in behind my place. It should help with noise and air pollution if possible. How big are Nellies or other evergreens you may suggest when one buys them from the nursery. I have hardpan soil here, too. Awful stuff. Will these tress be able to fight through that?
Thanks and can you email me at yesright@hotmail.com.Thanks

    Bookmark   August 28, 2008 at 5:30PM
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How quickly do Nellies grow In general pretty fast. Where are you? In zone 7 I would plant them in the fall. You can expect a fast growth rate after the first growing season.

That said, even though they aren't my favorite plant, if you have the room and don't mind having a plant that doesn't look manicured, it is hard to beat eleagnus pungens for reducing road noise. They are a maintenance nightmare if you require a manicured look. best to go with the nellie if that is the case. Good luck!

    Bookmark   September 12, 2008 at 10:31PM
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i am looking to plant about 20 plants on my property. the area is over an area where there are some cables. i have dug about 12in deep and not run into any, but there is a cable box close by. do these roots grow deep? would i run into a problem planting these plants over the cables?

    Bookmark   February 5, 2009 at 11:35AM
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Does anyone know where I can buy 50-100 nellie stevens holly seedlings in bulk? What can I expect to pay?

I am in Atlanta and we want to build a hedge around our property. I've already got around 80 Leyland Cypress seedlings in the ground.

Here is a link that might be useful: AchooAllergy.com

    Bookmark   February 5, 2009 at 7:13PM
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I planted three seven foot tall Nellie Stevens hollies last October and they looked great until February when they stated turning brown. They are under a black walnut. Are they not tolerant of black walnut toxicity?

    Bookmark   April 6, 2011 at 10:45PM
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A sub-division went in the 20 acres of woods behind our house. At least 23 years ago, we planted 15 long needle pines. 6 hollies (bufordi, I think) 4 red tips across the back of out lot. We have lost all but 4 pines. The last one was huge but fell one night ??. The hollies have been very slow growing. They are about 7 feet tall now. The red tips are huge and have been the best ones. they are up there almost as tall as the pines. We paid $60 each for the 15 pines (plus a rental fee for a ditch witch thing to plant them), $28-30 each for the hollies and about $3.00 each for the red tips. Red tips were the best...Sarah

    Bookmark   April 7, 2011 at 1:32AM
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I thought this holly is drought resistant. Monrovia says that it needs regular watering. It does well in North Texas heat?

    Bookmark   October 10, 2014 at 8:12PM
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