Wintergreen Boxwood Growth Rate

Wintergreen Boxwood can grow to be five feet tall. What growth can you expect?

The cold-tolerant wintergreen boxwood, commonly known as Korean boxwood, is a versatile shrub. This plant has tough, green foliage that darkens with age. The wintergreen’s leaves are extremely small and delicate. They have a smooth look and feel to them. 

Even when other boxwood shrubs turn yellow and lose their color over the severe winter months, the wintergreen variety stays bright and green.

Wintergreen boxwood grows into a versatile shrub that you’ll appreciate having in your landscape. Its vibrant green color lasts throughout winter, providing year-round foliage. 

The plant’s dense growth habit allows it to be easily shaped into round bushes, square hedges, or other shapes.

Understanding the tenacity of this plant will make it an even more valuable addition to your garden. Find out for how long you need to grow it, and learn some other facts about this wonderful shrub.

How Fast Does It Grow?

The wintergreen boxwood is a shrub with a very sluggish growth rate. Annually, the plant only grows between two and three inches.

two round bushes in the backyard

Mature Size

When fully grown, it will have a width of between three and five feet and a height of between two and four feet.

Where Does It Grow Best?

Optimal growing conditions for the wintergreen boxwood can be found anywhere in USDA Zones 4–9. The plant can survive in temperatures as low as 20 to 30 degrees F, but it thrives in temperatures ranging from 70 to 90 degrees F.

As long as the soil is not constantly saturated with water, the shrub will grow in any soil. It grows well on sandy or loamy soil with a pH close to neutral and a modest quantity of rainfall.

How Much Sun Does It Need?

Wintergreen boxwood tolerates a wide variety of light conditions, from complete exposure to the sun to some degree of shade. It needs between six and eight hours of daily exposure to direct sunshine.

a round green boxwood in the garden

Tips to Optimize Growth Speed

Wintergreen boxwoods are slow-growing shrubs that prefer dry soil and should not be overwatered. A high-quality fertilizer, regular and selective trimming, and enough watering are all aspects that may impact the plant’s health, which can, in turn, affect its growth rate.

Unhealthy and diseased shrubs don’t flourish, but maintaining your boxwood’s health will lead to bigger shrubs. 

Here are five recommendations to help your wintergreen boxwood grow faster:

1. Plant Appropriately

Boxwoods don’t like damp roots, so make sure the root crown, or the top of the roots where they attach to the stem, is visible at least an inch above ground level when planting the root ball. This will allow the roots to breathe more organically and lower the danger of root rot.

2. Water Appropriately

A boxwood will not grow quicker if you water it frequently or mist it with a spray bottle every day. The leaves will turn brown and fall off in the worst-case scenario. Resist the temptation to water your plant too frequently. The soil is still in excellent condition if it feels wet when your finger reaches the depth of your second knuckle. Only water the boxwood when the soil is completely dry.

3. Space the Plants Correctly

Boxwoods are very mindful of their environment. The pace at which they grow is influenced by how near they are to one other. To foster their best growth potential, plant smaller varieties 2 to 3 feet apart, while the bigger varieties should be planted 5 to 6 feet apart.

newly trimmed boxwood in the backyard

4. Cover With Mulching

Boxwoods don’t like changes in soil temperature. Using mulch helps maintain the temperature year-round. In the summer, it helps with water retention, and in the winter, it protects the roots. Provide a layer of mulch that is at least 3 inches thick and extends about a foot past the widest branches. 

5. Prune for Growth

When you first start pruning your boxwoods, shape them into pyramids. This should be done even if you are still considering how you want your hedges or topiary forms to appear. Pyramidal shapes enable the greatest light to reach the bushes, aiding the plant in the process of photosynthesis, which in turn helps the plant create food. Try not to cut any new growth until the leaves have matured and hardened. Any ill or diseased leaves should be removed quickly.

Leila Haynes
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