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A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Sunday - November 22, 2009

From: Manhattan, IL
Region: Midwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Fall shrub planting in Illinois
Answered by: Jackie OKeefe

QUESTION:

I was given a Holly winterberry - Ilex Verticillata and it is now November. Should I plant it in a pot in the house for the winter or should I plant it outside now? Please give me some planting nstruction such as depth it should be planted and should it be mulched, etc.

ANSWER:

Online planting guides for Illinois suggest that you could still put your Ilex verticillata (common winterberry) into the soil. You might call your local Extension Agent to confirm that it's not too late in your season. It looks like you are in a pocket of the 5b climate zone in a generally 5a area. That may give you a little more time, and these time windows can vary a little, depending on the weather patterns in various years.

Detailed planting instructions can be found at these two sites:  UI Urbana/Champagne and Illinois Agricultural Extension Service(pdf). They provide excellent guidance on digging the planting hole, how deep, how to backfill, and how to mulch and water.

 


Ilex verticillata

Ilex verticillata

 

 

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