Sunday, January 24, 2010


I know boxwood has been around since the 1600's, but it seems like it has taken on a major rejuvination in the past ten years.  I remember about twenty years ago when I planted  twelve boxwoods around a garden and not one of them made it through the first winter!  I was so upset, I never planted it again until about six years ago when we moved to a new house.  Chicagoland or Glencoe as it is called had been introduced a few years earlier (developed at the Chicago Botanic Garden), so I thought I would give it another try.

I planted five very expensive boxwoods in front of the house and was also going to plant another seven along the patio in the back.  After paying the price for the five, I decided to take a chance on a boxwood called Green Velvet which I purchased at Home Depot.  Well, you probably know what I am going to say, the $16.99 Green Velvets look better than the $50.00 Chicagolands.  Now, I realize that they are growing in different areas but the conditions are similar, not too wet (boxwoods do not like wet) and I have fertilized both varieties each year with a higher nitrogen fertilizer. 

Chicagoland grows a little higher and not as rounded as Green Velvet, but for the difference in price I think I would go with Green Velvet (they look healthier).  Boxwood does experience some dieback each year, dead yellow stems peeking out, cut them off at the main stem.  Hopefully, with good care the bush will fill in to cover any bare spots.  Trim Boxwood lightly each year to encourage growth and for a pleasing shape.

They are lovely evergreens, much more interesting than yews - so historical!