Sky Pencil Holly Front Entry DIY Makeover

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For a quick, no-fuss evergreen entrance way makeover skip the overly familiar Yew bushes, and find Sky Pencil Hollies at your nearby nursery or big box store. 

Sky Pencil Hollies are terrific small trees that grow to a maximum height of 10 feet, and spread only 2-3 feet in a tidy upright form that never needs pruning.  These Japanese natives have soft leaves, and when planted in groups form a year-round background for  your flowers and shrubs. These make a perfect addition to gardens, or architecture, providing a softening effect on the appearance of sharp angles.

The Holly pictured to the right is already four feet tall, and was used with two other Sky Pencils to soften and fill in some room up against the front wall of a modern craftsman home.  I chose to use this plant in a garden area that already featured a 20 foot mature American Holly tree, and rows of variegated Hosta, and Photinia.  After Planting the Pencils, and trimming up the Large Holly and bushes a bit, the garden is ready for it’s close up. For added easy care color, I recommend planting large amounts of yellow Tulip and Daffodil bulbs, to give the entrance way seemingly endless blooms for the first few weeks of spring.  Summer annuals can be planted for seasonal color, or the bed can remain a cool green oasis by the front door for the summer months.

Before                                                                     After

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Hint:  It’s important when planting larger shrubs and trees to leave room for the plants to mature without crowding each other. Make sure you know just how large and wide your plants will grow when planting, and space your shrubs out accordingly from the get-go to eliminate the need to shuffle your plants around in future years.