A Top Hedge

BOTANICAL NAME: Buxus Sempervirens Superba

DESCRIPTION: An evergreen shrub or small tree with glossy rounded green leaves on tight, compact stems.  Separate male and female flowers are produced on the same plant.  These are of little significance and are seldom noticed in the garden.  The primary attribute of this most useful plant is the year-round lush green foliage.

CULTURAL INFORMATION: Buxus is versatile and adaptable.  They grow in the sun or shade in a wide range of climatic conditions.  They do best in well-drained, loamy soils, but seem to cope with coastal, sandy situations.  Regular application every 6 to 8 weeks of a high nitrogen fertiliser ensures healthy foliage all the time.  They are relatively pest and disease free.  Check for scale on older leaves and stems.  They are extremely cold and frost hardy.

GARDEN USES:  They are best known as the perfect plant for growing as a box or boxed hedges in formal garden layouts.  These can vary from low edgings, 20cm to 30cm high, to taller hedges, some 1m to 1.5m high.  They require regular clipping and cutting to ensure a well kept appearance.  They are also highly suited to training into topiary specimens, like globular ball shapes or standards.  They make excellent specimen plants in pots or containers, having a long life expectancy in the same position.  They are an important component in most formal gardens around the globe.