Spring Leaf Yellowing and Drop on Holly

Yellowing and dropping of holly leaves is usually from the interior of the plant

Some of our customers have called in late April with concerns about their holly shrubs or trees dropping leaves-sometimes quite a lot.

It’s true that (most) Hollies are evergreen plants, keeping their leaves throughout the winter instead of dropping them like deciduous plants. But even evergreen plants drop some old leaves every year. Usually these leaves are dropped from the interior of the plant.

You can see the yellow leaves are evenly distributed throughout the tree. 

While it may seem like an awful lot of leaves are turning yellow and falling off (and making quite a cleanup project underneath), it is actually not a lot compared to the total number of the plant’s leaves. As long as the yellowing/falling leaves are evenly distributed throughout the plant and happens mostly in spring, it’s perfectly normal and will not hurt the holly at all. Just remember not to go barefoot in the yard until you rake them up!