The Right Time (Boxwood Planting)

timing when to plant

My life can feel pretty crazy at times.  So I like to have some order to it, and sometimes that plays out in the garden.  I think boxwood plants, also called box, genus name buxus, are the epitome of orderliness.  Their shapes and lines in the garden can be so pleasing to the eye. They are easy to grow, shapeable, and are perfect for borders.

we have three round shaped boxwood plants on one side of this bed, with hedging on the other

my established boxwood, hedging a bed that is in transition (but at least the hedging looks good!)

They are also easy to propagate.  I like the idea of saving money, so we did a mass propagation last summer by simply taking cuttings and planting them in raised beds. The Royal Horticultural Society website is where I go to ensure I’m on track with my gardening.  You can click here to see their tips on propagation.  We kept the cuttings watered and weeded through the fall and winter.

boxwood cuttings in raised beds (gladiolus in the background)

Now, there are different theories on when to plant out those cuttings. You might decide to wait several years to replant them, or not!  I chose to wait only the one season, and plant them out in what would normally be spring, but what actually turned out to be winter weather.  Fall is another option for planting them.  So honestly, I don’t know how they’ll fare, but they are still looking O.K.

boxwood cuttings (and pumpkin vine) October 2017

A view of our second bed with boxwood hedging which is still filling in, while on the left we have rounded shaped box plants (the newest bed which the box are now planted in is that mess on the far side of this bed)

We spaced the new plants about 12 inches apart.  We have box in two other beds.  One is well established (which is where we took the cuttings from), and the other is still filling in.  Box is slow growing, and easy to shape.  It can grow in full sun, or in shade.

freshly planted boxwood plants

Like I said, it is an easy to grow plant!  There are two important things to remember: young plants shouldn’t be allowed to dry out (not an issue here!), and equally as important is they shouldn’t be allowed to sit in waterlogged soil.  The later could be an issue here in Ireland in winter.  They like to be fed, which I’ll do in the spring, well, now really but I was hoping the weather would improve a bit first.

second bed with boxwood hedging

the first bed where I planted box hedging

Young hedge should be cut back by a third in May to promote full, “bushy” growth. Mature hedging should be trimmed in August. This is also the time to shape topiaries. The difference between May and August trimming is that in May the freshly cut new growth branches are left susceptible to weather damage and diseases. In August the new growth branches are simply stronger (hardened off).  The last grouping, old neglected plants (imagine!), do well with a hard pruning in late May.

our fresh boxwood plantings

Please just ignore this small tree in the corner of the picture above, which needs to be relocated!

some of the David Austin roses in bloom last year – pre box planting

our rose bed filled with David Austin roses now has boxwood hedging

I am looking forward to seeing how this bed fills out with both the roses and the hedging.

Helleborus orientalis Double Ellen Red is a new addition to the Rose bed

I will keep you updated on how the newly planted boxwood fare!  Hopefully, there will be good news to report 🙂

In peace,
Dana

Do you see what I see?

stay tuned for this view in bloom...

stay tuned for this view in bloom…

My husband and I work for two different entities that are both located at Dublin City University.  We walk around the same grounds and, technically, we see the same things.  It turns out though, that we see completely differently what is right in front of both of us.  Funny how that is.  🙂

Looking at the back of the DCU front entrance

Looking at the back of the DCU front entrance

lovely rows of plants

lovely rows of plants

I tend to look at the trees, shrubs, flowers, and whether the environment feels inviting.  It’s no secret that those things bring me joy, so I seek them out.  My husband, not so much.

I guess I like to see things neat and orderly

I guess I like to see things neat and orderly

This whole conversation came about when I asked my husband if he liked how the crocus were planted among the daffodils, as we walked past them.  Maybe you can guess his response:  “What crocus?”  followed by “and what daffodils?”.  These flowers are in front of the Nurses building where we often meet for lunch.  I love the combination!  How did he not *see* them?

Crocus among the daffodils

Crocus among the daffodils

A non-close-up view of the crocus/daffodil combination

A non-close-up view of the crocus/daffodil combination in front of the nurses building.

I love the tall structure of the evergreens along the pathway.

the other side of the pathway near the Nurses building

the other side of the pathway near the Nurses building while the picture below is from the other side of the other side!

Looking out towards the tall structured evergreens

A boxwood oval formation with rocks and shaped boxwood inside the figure.  Hmmm, interesting look?

I really like the grounds at DCU.   I love seeing flowers.  I think they create an inviting atmosphere no matter where they are.

Near the front reception of DCU

Near the front reception of DCU

If there is “sun” in the weather forecast I throw my camera in my bag, because you just never know what you might see on your lunch-time walk.

ornamental cabbage in the park

ornamental cabbage in the park

Take this ornamental cabbage, for example!  What a pleasant surprise to see this in the park.  I must try growing these at some stage because it is wonderful to have some color in the garden at this time of year.

color in the garden with ornamental cabbage and primrose

color in the garden with ornamental cabbage and primrose

purple ornamental cabbage

purple ornamental cabbage

The loop around the park is a wonderful walk during lunch break.  It is peaceful and beautiful.

I see structure

I see structure among the trees…

But if you look closely underneath the trees, you will see these lovely crocus:

crocus under the trees

crocus under the trees

a bit of a curved yellow formation

a bit of a curved yellow formation

deep purple are my favorite

the deep purple colored crocus are my favorite

white crocus

white crocus

wild life ;-)

wild life 😉

an Irish robin in the park

an Irish robin in the park

The tete-a-tete were just starting to bloom when I took these pictures last week.

tete-a-tete (dwarf daffodil) with one anemone

tete-a-tete (dwarf daffodil) with one anemone

tete-a-tete and hyacinth

tete-a-tete and a hyacinth whose leaves have seen better days…

DCU woodlands ... sort of

DCU woodlands … sort of

I call the above picture “anticipation”!  So much bloomin’ potential!

crocus in the park at DCU

crocus in the park at DCU … I love the play of sunlight.

I hope you enjoyed “seeing what I see” while walking around DCU.

In peace,
Dana

There is so much more to this picture than just a building. Do you see the hedges, trees, monument, paving???

There is so much more to this picture than just a building. Do you see the two layers of hedges, tree lines, monument, paving?  😉