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Care Guide: How to care for a Topiary Buxus

Buxus is an evergreen topiary shrub whose compact size makes it an excellent choice for gardens or home landscapes with limited space. Prized for the neat leaves for creating formal shapes, it is very hardy and ideal for growing outdoors successfully throughout the UK.

Pair of Topiary Buxus Balls

Where to plant:

Ideally, plant your Buxus in a bright spot in your garden that receives between four and eight hours of sunlight each day. Choose a planting location that also offers your Buxus fertile and well-drained soil.


If you plant into the planters supplied, it is essential to provide drainage in the containers. Firstly, drill several holes in the base of the planter, then add a layer of gravel, stones or old broken plant pots before transferring the plant from its nursery pot and topping up with quality multi-purpose compost around the root-ball. “We recommend using our Compost King multi-purpose compost for the best results,” says Chris Bonnett, gardening expert for The Express.

For best results, plant your Buxus at the same level that it was growing in its nursery container.

Water your Buxus topiary after planting to thoroughly moisten the surrounding soil. Water the tree regularly during the growing season to encourage it to form a strong, healthy root system. Be careful never to allow the topiary to dry out in hot weather when growing in containers – if it dries out even once it could die.

After Care

It is critically important to feed your Buxus topiary with a good quality water-soluble fertiliser in the growing season to promote healthy growth and a good colour. Always be sure to follow the application instructions on your fertiliser package.

Trim over your Buxus topiary in late winter to maintain a good shape. Use sharpened and sterilized shears to remove any diseased, damaged straggly branches from your Buxus and maintain a good shape. It is also fine to trim in late summer/early Autumn too, to keep the topiary in good shape.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I water my Buxus?

Your Buxus should be regularly watered so the soil is moist, depending on weather this could be every day to every other day.

Why do Buxus turn yellow?

When the season changes from winter to spring it is common for a Buxus to turn yellow as it is adjusting to the weather change. This can be reduced by planting the shrub in a sheltered and shaded location to protect the plant as it adapts to the weather change. If you are not sure about the level of shade in your garden, check out our plants for shaded gardens guide to learn more.

Why is my Buxus dying?

The most common reasons a Buxus will die is poor weather and watering conditions and fungus attacking your plant.

Download Care Guides

We have created two care guides to help you grow a happy and healthy plant. We have an In-depth Care Guide and a Simplified Care Guide.

Shop Buxus Now

Updated on February 13, 2023

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