Box hedging (Buxus)
Box plants, also known by the Latin name Buxus Sempervirens, make an excellent dense, slow-growing, long-lived, evergreen hedge that can be kept tightly clipped to maintain a formal appearance. This UK native is well suited to low hedges around borders, edging paths or in the knot garden with small, oval, dark green foliage which makes a great year-round privacy screen and windbreak. It has a growth rate of 10-15cm per year and will reach an eventual height of between 50cm and 1.5 metres, depending on growing conditions. Box hedging combines well with topiary and pleated trees – long hedges punctuated with box balls or pyramids at regular intervals help add to the grandeur and formality of the display. Box is happy in sun or shade and can be grown in most fertile soils, growing best in a slightly alkaline, well drained soils. As Buxus sempervirens is tolerant of drought and poor soils, it can also be a useful option on banks and slopes where other hedging varieties may struggle. Box can be kept in shape by clipping once annually, although it will not lose its compact appearance if left to its own devices.