Common Boxwood

Posted by

Lawn & Garden

Common boxwood is a popular evergreen shrub that is often used for hedges. It comes from western Asia but can be found growing in the wild throughout Europe.

The common boxwood is a slow-growing shrub with small, shiny leaves that are dark green in color. It can grow up to 30 feet tall, but it is usually kept much smaller through pruning. The shrub produces fragrant flowers and fruit, but they are not particularly noteworthy.

Common boxwoods prefer rich soil and can grow in full sun or deep shade. Newly transplanted shrubs should be protected from the sun, and established plants may need to be shielded from winter winds. Mulching helps to keep the roots moist. Boxwoods can be pruned into any shape and respond well to harsh pruning.

Common boxwoods are ideal for formal hedges and topiaries, and they make great border plants. Littleleaf boxwood is a similar plant that is hardier and has smaller leaves. There are also many dwarf and standard varieties of common boxwood with differently colored leaves.

Want more gardening information? Try:

  • Landscape Shrubs; find the right combination of shrubs to create the effect you want
  • Types of Shrubs; see tips for choosing the right shrub for your yard
  • Gardening; turn your garden into a lush retreat using these step-by-step instructions


1. What is common boxwood?

Common boxwood (Buxus sempervirens) is an evergreen shrub that is widely used in landscaping and gardening. It is native to Europe, Asia, and Africa and is known for its dense, compact growth and small, glossy leaves.

2. How big does common boxwood grow?

Common boxwood can grow up to 20 feet tall, but it is often pruned to maintain a smaller size. It can also be shaped into various forms, such as hedges, topiaries, and bonsai trees.

3. How do you care for common boxwood?

Common boxwood prefers well-drained soil and partial shade. It should be watered regularly, especially during dry periods, and fertilized in the spring and fall. Pruning should be done in late winter or early spring to maintain its shape and promote new growth.

4. What are the benefits of using common boxwood in landscaping?

Common boxwood is a versatile plant that can be used in many different ways in landscaping. It can be used to create formal hedges, to add structure and texture to a garden, or to create a focal point in a landscape design. It is also relatively low-maintenance and can be pruned into a variety of shapes and sizes.

5. What are some common pests and diseases that affect common boxwood?

Common boxwood is susceptible to several pests and diseases, including boxwood leafminer, boxwood psyllid, boxwood mite, and boxwood blight. It is important to monitor for these pests and diseases and to take appropriate measures to prevent and treat them.

6. Can common boxwood be grown in containers?

Yes, common boxwood can be grown in containers, but it requires regular watering and fertilizing. It should also be repotted every few years to prevent root-bound plants.

7. How long does it take for common boxwood to grow?

The growth rate of common boxwood varies depending on the growing conditions and the pruning techniques used. It can take several years for common boxwood to reach its full size, but it can also be pruned to maintain a smaller size and shape.

8. Can common boxwood be propagated?

Yes, common boxwood can be propagated through cuttings or by layering. Cuttings should be taken in the summer and rooted in a well-draining soil mix. Layering involves bending a branch to the ground and covering it with soil to encourage root formation.

9. Is common boxwood poisonous?

Yes, all parts of common boxwood are poisonous if ingested. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and other symptoms if consumed by humans or animals.

10. What is the best time to plant common boxwood?

The best time to plant common boxwood is in the fall or early spring when the soil is moist and the temperatures are cooler. It is important to plant it in a well-draining soil mix and to water it regularly until it becomes established.

11. What are some companion plants for common boxwood?

Common boxwood pairs well with a variety of plants, including hydrangeas, roses, lavender, and other evergreen plants such as juniper and yew. It can also be used as a backdrop for colorful annuals and perennials.

12. Can common boxwood be used for culinary purposes?

No, common boxwood should not be used for culinary purposes as it is toxic if ingested. It should only be used for ornamental purposes in landscaping and gardening.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *