Boxwood, garden problem-solver

boxwood in a box at filoli

I don’t know if the gardeners at Filoli were going for a visual pun here, but I do love the look of these planters. Something like this would give you structure and some greenery and height wherever you need it.

There are endless varieties of boxwood so it can fill just about any need in your garden. It’s endlessly versatile IF you take care of it. Boxwood needs some maintenance to keep it looking its lush, leafy best. Otherwise, plant something else. Trust me, I have seen some pretty sorry looking boxwood around here.

I sometimes see boxwood referred to as drought tolerant. It’s not California drought tolerant. Here, it needs regular water and food.

Boxwood needs to be clipped regularly. Infrequent, hard pruning gives you sharp edges and lots of brown stem ends showing through. Here is a great pruning guide.

Boxwood is at its best when it’s neat, structured, and symmetrical. Don’t let it turn into some weirdly pruned, misshapen orb.

Below boxwood is used on the left as to edge low border and on its own as a taller hedge on the right:

boxwood edged flower border

Here giving structure to a tiny, formal garden:

small difficult spaces

And here in a small supporting role:

courtyard garden at Filoli