En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Pruning of overgrown non-native boxwood from Round Rock TX

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - February 19, 2011

From: Round Rock, TX
Region: Select Region
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Pruning of overgrown non-native boxwood from Round Rock TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have several large over-grown Japanese Boxwoods that we'd really like to trim down in height about 10 to 12 inches, however most of the middle and lower sections of the bushes are bare or very sparse with leaves. We are afraid that we will kill them if we trim them this much. They were already planted at the house when we moved in, in 1983. The house was built in 1979. If lowering the height isn't recommended, is there anything we can do to get the bushes to appear full again? How long can Japanese Boxwoods live? I can email a picture if that would help.

ANSWER:

No member of the genus Buxus (boxwood) is native to North America. They are widely planted in the United States in an attempt to emulate the formal English landscape. We are not sure which of the popular species of Buxus was planted by the previous owners of your property. Two articles from University of Connecticut Horticulture discuss Buxus microphylla, which is native to Japan and Buxus sempervirens, which is native to southern Europe, western Asia and northern Africa.

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the growth, protection and propagation of plants native not only to the United States but to the area in which the plant is being grown. A native plant will have a better chance of surviving and will consume less resources in doing so.

Answers to your questions about boxwood can be found in this Virginia Cooperative Extension article Boxwood in the Landscape.

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Trailing snapdragon hanging basket has flowers that are turning brown.
June 09, 2009 - Trailing snapdragon hanging basket in yellow, flowers are turning brown all over the plant. Why? I water every day as told & fertilized once in 3 weeks. It was so beautiful.
view the full question and answer

Non-native Japanese maple seedling in Rotterdam NY
August 09, 2010 - In the first couple days of August, I discovered a baby Japanese Maple growing against the wall of my storage shed, a short distance from a neighbor's full grown Japanese Maple. I transplanted this 5...
view the full question and answer

Yellowing of non-native eggplant in Temple TX
October 28, 2009 - I planted egg plants in my raised bed garden for the first time this season. The plants are healthy and have produced a number of beautiful small white fruit with purple accent (spots). However, the f...
view the full question and answer

Non-native pittisporum disease in Austin
August 09, 2009 - Did Barbara Medford of Round Rock, TX ever find out what was causing sections of her dwarf pittosporum to die out? I have seen this in many yards now.
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native Canary Date Palms from Miami FL
December 06, 2011 - Hi: The fronts of my canary date palm, which I planted about 6 years ago, has been getting brown from the bottom of the tree and working itself towards the top for the past several months now. The b...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center