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All About Boxwood

Information About Boxwood Shrubs

Boxwood shrubs are a genus of around 70 species of the family Buxaceae. They are slow growing evergreen shrub that is typically grown in warmer climates, but newer varieties can handle frost. These are grown in growing zones 5 to 9. These are some of the most popular shrubs in the United States, and are typically grown into hedges. Gardeners can also prune and trim these shrubs into a topiary and advanced gardeners can grow these into a bonsai. You can also grow these in garden planters for year round interest. These can also be trained into growing into a tree form. Most people will recognize these being grown as hedges though.


Most boxwood shrubs will grow anywhere from 1 to 6 feet tall. However, some varieties can grow up to 20 feet tall when mature. These can grow from partial shade to full sunlight. The plants are very hardy and disease resistant and are low maintenance once established. Pruning these is most of the work that needs to be done.

Boxwoods are native to Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, Madagascar, Central America, Mexico, and the Caribbean islands. The majority of species being tropical or subtropical. In Europe these bushes are known simply as Box.

Boxwood shrubs, otherwise known as Buxus or simply “boxes”, are most often used in landscaping as an edging component. This is a shrub that requires trimming and pruning so if you are not one who enjoys fussing over your landscaping and are looking for immediate presentation, then this may not be the shrub for you.

This is an elegant shrub that keeps landscaping looking sharp and crisp. They are known for their very dense leaves and the way that they grow, remaining so compact. The boxwood shrub is slow growing and will reach about three feet tall when mature. The fact that it grows so slow is helpful for landscapers wanting to shape them into a precise pattern; this way they will never grow so fast, they get out of control.

Mulching boxwood shrubs is essential to their growth. Their roots grow very shallow so they require protection from the heat. A three inch layer of organic mulch is ideal starting at the trunk of the shrub and working your way out about a foot or so all the way around. Boxwood shrubs need a well-drained soil or their roots will rot. They can be planted in full sun but thrive in a partially shaded area.

Planting boxwood shrubs in a group is ideal although they are perfectly fine being planted all on their own. Most landscapers enjoy how formal they look when used as edges and since they are so dense, they prune well into decorative shrubs as well. These shrubs are often used in wreaths, garlands and other Christmas decorations.

Common Questions About Boxwood Shrubs

Can Boxwoods Be Grown Into Trees?

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