Box Hedging

Box Hedge Plants

Box (Buxus) produces some of the best small formal evergreen hedges. From dwarf box (Buxus suffruticosa) which tops out at 30/40 cms after many years growing to Common Box (Buxus sempervirens) which has larger leaves and as a clipped hedge will reach 80+ cms in 10 years. It can grow to a couple of metres as a hedge but allow decades for that to happen... and if you don't have the patience then have a look at the rest of our range of hedging plants.

For those who are concerned about box blight, take a look at Japanese Holly (Ilex crenata). Its natural growth is less compact than Box, but it thickens up when clipped and at a distance of only a few feet it is almost indistinguishable from Box. Please note that the foliage is definitely not prickly or holly shaped.

Box in Summary

  • Uses: Formal low hedges from 10cms upwards
  • Good Points: Native, evergreen, clips beautifully
  • Position: Anywhere there is drainage and light
  • Growth: 2-5 cms p.a.

Choosing, Planting and Caring for a Box Hedge

When to use a Box Hedge

As Box (Buxus) is extremely slow growing it is specifically used for low hedges such as those used to edge a rose border or to divide planting areas in a parterre. These are structured treatments which probably make Box is the most formal hedge plant there is. So you choose Box hedging where you want a low hedge that will be clipped with sharp edges. It will create a visible barrier without blocking lines of sight

Box comes in two flavours - small (Buxus sempervirens) and very small (Buxus suffruticosa) so it is important to get the choice right - use Buxus sempervirens for hedges of 25 cms and over and Buxus suffruticosa for hedges smaller than that.

Planting Box Hedging

If you prefer the written word, have a look at our very detailed written instructions on how to plant a box hedge. For those who like the movies, then with minor adaptations, follow the instructions in our video on how to plant a formal hedge. The principal difference is that Box should be planted at 5 plants per metre in a single row and Dwarf Box at 8 plants per metre. Other than that the most important thing is that your Box hedge is in an open situation where there is plenty of air movement. Never plant a Box hedge under trees or where it is overhung by buildings.

Caring for your Box hedge

There is an old saying about clipping your Box hedge on Derby Day. Don't pay any attention to that. The best time is in winter when the temperature is above freezing. If you must clip in summer, then do so when the weather (and the forecast) is dry. One clip a year should be enough and don't worry if you make a mistake as box regrows from old wood. It just does so quite slowly. Ans rake up and burn fallen leaves in autumn as they harbour disease and best destroyed. If you were to give your box hedging a mulch of well-rotted compost or manure in spring, it would be your friend for life...

Box Hedging plants for Sale

You can buy bareroot and container grown Box hedging here as well as potted Japanese Holly (which cannot be sold bareroot). All are sold singly with quantity discounts applied automatically as you order more of and one size and variety

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  1. Buxus sempervirens - 15 - 40cms Bushes
    • Evergreen. Slow growing, tolerant of full shade.
    • Other Sizes: Dwarf.
    • Excellent formal hedging.
    • Max. Height: 8m
    • Year round delivery.
    From £4.08  Inc VAT

    Out of Stock - Ordering from mid-August 2020

  2. Buxus sempervirens Suffruticosa
    • 15 - 30cms Pot-Grown Bushes
    • Evergreen. Slow growing, tolerant of full shade
    • Other Sizes: Pot-Grown & Bareroot common box
    • Ideal decorative, low hedging
    • Max. Height: 1m
    • Pot-Grown Delivery: All Year
    From £5.76  Inc VAT

    Out of Stock - Ordering from mid-August 2020

    • Final Size: 30 cm to 1m
    • Soil: any
    • Use: formal hedging/topiary shapes
    • Single row: 3-4 plants per metre
    • Colour: dark green (no prickles) with black berries
    • Hedging:
    From £4.74  Inc VAT

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