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Buxus sempervirens - Common box

Buxus sempervirens is a slow growing evergreen shrub or small tree, growing between 1 and 8 metres tall. The small (1.5 to 3cm long) green to yellow leathery dark to blackish green leaves depending on the season have a pungent smell, and are oval in shape but can differ depending on the variant.

This tough evergreen plant is extremely shade tolerant, often growing in the wild under large deciduous trees to which they remain subordinate, it also re-grows from broken stumps and once established is almost indestructible.

A very popular ornamental plant in gardens, particularly valued for topiary such as Balls, Cones, Cubes and Spirals as well hedges because of its small leaves and evergreen nature, tolerance of close shearing and scented foliage.

FACT: Prior to the 1800’s the wood from the Buxus was used to make Flutes and other musical instruments.

Plant Profile

Name: Buxus sempervirens

Common Name: Common box

Other Name: European Box

Family: Buxaceae

Height: up to between 4 and 6 metres

Width: up to between 4 and 6 metres

Demands: Partial Shade / Full Shade

Soil: Chalk, Clay, Sand or Loam

Foliage: Evergreen

Toxicity: Ingestion may cause stomach upset

Buxus sempervirens info sheet