Q. Dragon lady holly, gets loads of green berries, but they fall of in summer. never get red never see winter. HELP


Dear Sue,

Here are some possibilities that I have found:

  • A genetic predisposition for 'Dragon Lady' to drop most of its fruit – similar to how many fruit trees naturally thin themselves in order to produce fewer but bigger and healthier remaining mature fruits. (Fruit-growers call it the "June drop.") Nothing you can do about it.
  • The green fruits aren't completely pollinated. 'Dragon Lady' is a hybrid female that needs a compatible nearby male to pollinate its flowers. 'Blue Stallion' and 'Blue Prince' are two good ones for that. It's possible that you're getting enough pollination to form fruits, but the process isn't happening thoroughly enough that the fruits can make it to maturity. With poor pollination, developing fruits will abort and drop.
  • Some kind of stress, especially drought or a sudden heat wave at pollination time or poor soil nutrition. Those would more likely explain bad fruiting in some years instead of having a drop happen every year.

You could run a soil test to see where you stand with the major nutrients and acid level of the soil. For good measure, give the plant a good soaking during hot, dry spells.

Good luck.


  • Last Updated Jan 08, 2019
  • Views 248
  • Answered By Aska Gardener

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