11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022

11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022

Boxwood shrubs Boxwood plants (Buxus) are dense, evergreen shrubs often planted in elegant and formal landscapes. Many varieties and cultivars of boxwood plants exist. Boxwoods are grown for foliage as their flowers are insignificant. … Boxwoods may also be planted as focal points or foundation plantings.

Growth rate12 inches per year Boxwood is naturally a slow-growing shrub and generally add less than 12 inches per year. But the boxwood requires proper care to thrive as a vigorous shrub and grow at its expected rate.

Lifespan Common Boxwood Lifespan: 20-30 Years.

Size1 to 6 feet tall 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.

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Potted boxwood care

One of the plants usually seen in many cities is the boxwood or Buxus sempervirens. It is an evergreen plant, which allows it to look strong and pretty all year long. In addition, it is a plant that is widely used in many garden beds since it can be pruned to create hedges, both in regular shapes and in other more artistic or sculptural forms. However, it is also a good option for growing in pots since it adapts well to most soils and, as we have mentioned, it looks like leaves all year round.

If you want to know the care of potted boxwood and protect this plant from pests and diseases that generally attack it, keep reading Green Ecology, and we will tell you about it.

You may also be interested in Potted avocado care


  1. What is boxwood or Buxus sempervirens
  2. How to care for a potted boxwood: care guide
  3. Pests and diseases of the boxwood shrub

What is boxwood or Buxus sempervirens

The common boxwood, also called boxwood or simply boxwood, is a plant that can reach an approximate size of fewer than 2 meters wide and up to 5 meters high. It is an original plant from North Africa and Southern Europe and can also be found in large areas of the Middle East.

It is a shrub that usually grows in semi-dry soils, which has rigid branches that grow numerous, as well as green and leathery leaves. It has small flowers with an unpleasant smell and fruits of a size similar to that of chickpeas, which usually appear in a rounded shape and with three characteristic spikes on one of its sides.

It is a very slow-growing plant, which means that its reproduction is usually carried out more from cuttings than from its seeds. Boxwood is a widely used plant in gardening, as it can grow both in soil and in a pot. Although it will not reach a massive size in a pool or, in the case of doing so, it will only be when it has large pots. It can be presented both as a wild bush and pruned in the form of a hedge to give it shape. One of the precautions taken with this plant is that both the plant itself and its fruits are poisons, so it is essential to prevent animals or small children from playing with the fruits and avoid using kitchen scissors for pruning.

How to care for a potted boxwood: care guide

The care of potted boxwood is quite simple, and we show it to you in this practical guide:

Substrate or soil for potted boxwood

Regarding the type of soil, it must be taken into account that it is a plant that prefers soils with a neutral pH or calcareous soils. However, it is a plant that adapts well to most soils, even poor soils.

11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022

Watering potted boxwood

One of the aspects that must be taken into account when caring for the boxwood plant is that the irrigation should be adapted very well to the seasons of the year. In this way, it will be essential to water the soil before it dries up completely during the hottest months. However, it will also be necessary to avoid excess moisture and flooded land. In this way, it is best to water the plant when the earth’s surface begins to dry out but not the interior. On the contrary, it is best to limit watering to once a week during the winter and autumn months, always avoiding excess water since it is a plant that can be easily affected by fungi.

Temperature for potted boxwood

Finally, another aspect that we will have to consider when caring for a potted boxwood plant is that it supports cool and warm temperatures well. However, the best temperature will be the one around approximately 10ºC.

Light and location for potted boxwood shrub

On the other hand, it is a plant that prefers indirect light, so in summer, it is recommended to place the plant in a place that avoids direct sunlight; for example, it is better to have it located in a sunny and shady area.

Thus, seeing the most suitable temperature and light, we can say that this potted shrub can be both outdoors and indoors, but in sunny and shady areas. If you choose to have it outdoors, they are usually used in a very decorative way for the house entrance, placing one on each side of the door or at the beginning of the path.

Potting, transplanting, and pruning boxwood

Also, keep an eye on its growth to see when the pot becomes too small, and you should transplant it. Anyway, from the outset, we recommend that you already plant it in a large pot.

Regular pruning is necessary to be a shrub, and having it in a pot gives it the shape you want since it is one of the best-known trees and shrubs for pruning top aria.

Pests and diseases of the boxwood shrub

Boxwood is also a plant easily affected by different pests despite being a reasonably resistant plant. Although they do not kill the plant in many cases, they will significantly affect its appearance and its health and growth, so it is essential to be attentive to the symptoms that it may show, especially in the color of the leaves.

In general, during the summer months, the main threats will be found in some insects, such as mealybugs or the boxwood mosquito. In these cases, it is best to spray both the plant and the soil with natural insecticides that eliminate the pest but do not affect the plant.

On the contrary, during the months of more humidity and cold, the most significant danger will be the appearance of fungi in the potted boxwood. These are especially appreciated in a poor yellowish color on the leaves and in black spots or specks on the leaves themselves. In this case, it is best to spray with a natural fungicide made from minerals such as sulfur or biological substances such as cinnamon or garlic.

If you want to read more articles similar to Potted boxwood care, we recommend that you enter our Growing and plant care category.

Cultivation and characteristics of the boxwood shrub (Buxus sempervirens)

We have already talked about the pruning of several species of trees, but today we bring you a bush that everyone knows—the Boxwood. A shrub is very famous for its adaptation to different climates and soils, but above all, it has awakened the most sculptural pruning in many gardeners. Plant a box, let it grow, and discover your “Michelangelo” vegetable.

11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022
11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022

Grow a box and ignite your creativity by pruning

As a beginning, we must say that Boxwood ( Buxus sempervirens ) is a shrub native to Europe that supports the different climatic calamities that the continent offers, from rainy and cold England to the Mediterranean latitudes. It is shrubby but free-form can reach more than 10 meters, considered more arboreal.

It grows very slowly, so it will take patience to make a good boxwood hedge. Once formed and pruned, the advantage is that this slowness is excellent for less maintenance. Another consequence of the slow growth is a heavy, very hard, and fine wood that cabinetmakers adore for pieces of complicated carving and not so complex because many of the wooden kitchen utensils are made of this wood for its fineness.

It has been used as a garden hedge in Classical Greece. It is a favorite for delimiting public and private gardens due to its evergreen, or perennial character allows the formed border to remain dense all year round. The main reason for its low maintenance is the slow growth mentioned above.

Conditions for a box tree to thrive in your garden


As anticipated, it can be found in many places in Europe. Despite its adaptation to different climates, it prefers cold winters and even enduring the cold with occasional frosts, especially if planted in the garden. Thanks to its foliage density and its many branches, it is very wind resistant. It supports high doses of light, although it prefers something more semi-shadow. If it is planted as a hedge, there may be no choice but to place it in full sun. There will be no problems in this regard as long as we have more attention to irrigation.


It has a high tolerance to different soil conditions, although slightly limestone or neutral and rich soils. What we should never miss, as usual, is good drainage.


If it is in a pot or planter, you will have to be more attentive. If it is planted in a garden, it should not be overwatered and in summer, increase the frequency a little more, allowing the ground to dry out between watering and watering.

The pruning of the box, its primary virtue

The reason for its use in hedges is its excellent resistance to pruning of all kinds. Boxwood allows cuts at all levels, and that is its great virtue of creating from walls to the most incredible figures. Does the term “topiary art” sound familiar to you?

It consists of shaping a hedge (Boxwood, for example) to create concrete figures, creating absolute plant sculptures or gardens with almost fractal geometries. Go ahead, prune your box!

Boxwood growing: tips for caring for boxwood plants

Boxwood plants (Buxus) are dense, evergreen shrubs often planted in elegant, formal landscapes. There are many varieties and cultivars of boxwood plants. Boxwoods are grown for foliage as their flowers are insignificant.

Growing boxwood in your home landscape allows you to create a formal hedge, a matching border, or a couple of boxwood plants to balance a driveway. Box trees can also be planted as focal points or foundation plantings.

Boxwood for sale

  • Brighter Blooms 3 Gal. Wintergreen Boxwood Shrub
  • Flowerwood Wintergreen Boxwood
  • True Dwarf English Boxwood
  • Plant Addicts Japanese Boxwood 2.5 Quart
  • Proven Winners Sprinter Boxwood Buxus Live Evergreen Shrub, Size:
  • Baby Gem Boxwood Shrub
  • Baucom’s Boxwood Wintergreen
11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022
11 How to Grow and Care for Boxwood (Box) Shrubs Tips 2022

Tips for planting boxwood

When choosing where to plant boxwood, be sure to plant it in the most appropriate location for your needs. A full or partial place in the sun is needed for the optimal growth of this specimen. Successful boxwood cultivation requires well-drained soil, and while plants prefer the ground to be organic, boxwood’s soil needs are adaptable.

When planting boxwood, consider your climate throughout the year. Boxwood plants will appreciate the afternoon shade and regular watering in summer if temperatures become incredibly high. Water deeply, as frequent, shallow watering will not reach the root zone of the growing box. Until established, after about two years, the boxwood will need at least one watering weekly.

When planting boxwood, please place them in an area protected from the winter wind to avoid a condition called winter tan—plant at the same level as planted in the nursery or container. Planting boxwood too intensely can lead to stress and possibly death.

Information on caring for boxwood

Properly covering shallow-rooted boxwood helps retain moisture and keep the roots fresh. Growing boxwoods should have a 2 to 3-inch layer of mulch that extends 12 inches past the foliage. As with all bush mulch, the logs should not be covered.

Aside from watering and mulching, growing boxwood is a low-maintenance endeavor unless you want to keep them as a trimmed hedge. Shearing or pruning boxes is the most time-consuming part of box tree care when growing as a hedge, but you will be rewarded with a healthy and long-lasting fence. Caring for the older box will include thinning the branches to allow sunlight to reach the inner foliage.

Boxwood leaf miner is the most common pest when caring for boxwood. If the foliage turns yellow, treat it with organic oil or insecticidal sprays. Phytophthora root rot can result from soggy soils.

Annual soil tests can determine if the soil pH for boxwood is correct. The soil pH should be between 6.5 and 7. It is best to test the soil before planting boxwood. The pH can be raised with lime and lowered with sulfur.

As a slow-growing landscape, box trees are valuable plants and consequently expensive. Take the time to choose carefully where to plant your box. Remember to water and grind properly for a vigorous, long-lived sample.

Do boxwoods like sun or shade?

The boxwood can be grown as a standalone plant, in groups or as a hedge. Furthermore, the boxwood has been used in containers, topiaries and for bonsai purposes. They can thrive in light shade as well as full sun.

How big does a boxwood shrubs get?

Mature Size

The common boxwood grows to a height of 15–20′ and a spread of 15–20′ at maturity.

Where is the best place to plant boxwoods?

Where to Plant Boxwood. Most boxwoods thrive in a mix of sun and shade, and need a little shelter from hot afternoon sun and cold winds. So, be aware of exposure for the spot you choose and make sure the variety you select most likely will thrive there.

Are boxwoods annual or perennial?

With rich green foliage year-round, an ability to grow both in sun and partial shade and a high tolerance for pruning, they’re more versatile than many other shrubs. In winter boxwoods provide structure, while in summer they act as a dark backdrop for blooming perennials.

Boxwood types and sizes

  • Box
    Common box
  • Buxus microphylla
  • Buxus ‘Green Velvet’
  • Southern Living Plants Baby Gem Boxwood
  • Buxus harlandii

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