Unfortunately, all of my Sky Pencils died. I have no idea what killed them. I'm over it now. They were rather expensive and I liked them so it was hard to take. There is the effect of the concrete on the soil and there is a downspout nearby but the Sky Pencil closest to the downspout was the last one to die. One would think that if it was the downspout that the Sky Pencil closest to the downspout would die first. Even with the downspout, that location is rather dry. There is a thriving California Lilac very close, just around the corner. I was thinking the roots may have been the issue.
I have some Dark Stars, which are relatives of California Lilac, and the Dark Stars were thriving and closed in around my Lace Leaf Maple. The Lace Leaf Maple died. I think that the Dark Star roots killed my Lace Leaf Maple. I have another Lace Leaf Maple that is not surrounded by Dark Stars and it is thriving.
I will never know with certainty what caused the death of my Sky Pencils. I've learned to accept that sometimes plants die. My friends loved their Sky Pencils in big pots by their entry. Their Sky Pencils also died mysteriously. I think that Sky Pencils must be touchy. Holly is invasive and tough to get rid of around here. I think that Sky Pencil is a type of holly but it doesn't seem to be as tough as the wild volunteer holly, the standard holly with the red berries.
The bees loved my Sky Pencils when they were blooming. It was fun to watch them. I miss my Sky Pencils but I don't plan to have any more of them.