Fastest Growing Boxwood: Comprehensive Guide on Care and Maintenance

Discover the world of fast-growing boxwoods, their unique properties and how they can transform your garden into a lush, green paradise.

The Green Velvet Boxwood, a hybrid boxwood variety, is renowned for its rapid growth rate. This evergreen shrub can reach its mature height of 3 to 4 feet in just five years, making it an ideal choice for those seeking quick results.

Its dense, vibrant green foliage remains attractive throughout the year, offering a stunning visual appeal.

In the following sections, we will delve into the specifics of growing and caring for this fast-growing boxwood, ensuring you can enjoy its beauty in your own garden in no time.

Key takeaways:

  • Green Velvet Boxwood is renowned for its rapid growth rate (3-4 ft in 5 years) and vibrant green foliage.
  • Sprinter Boxwood and Green Mountain Boxwood are other fast-growing varieties.
  • Boxwoods need dappled shade, well-drained soil, and moderate temperature/humidity.
  • Proper spacing, pruning, and care routine are crucial for optimal growth.
  • Wintergreen and Green Velvet are resistant to diseases.

Fastest Growing Boxwood Varieties

fastest growing boxwood

The sprinter boxwood, also known by its Latin name, Buxus microphylla ‘Bulthouse’, is among one of the fastest-growing boxwood varieties. It’s recognized for its distinctive, densely branched growth pattern, allowing it to put on an impressive foot of growth annually. This particular variety is well-loved for its year-round, deep, glossy green foliage.

Green Mountain boxwood, or Buxus ‘Green Mountain’, is another variety with a fast growth rate. It can reach its mature height of five feet in just a few years, making it a popular choice for those needing quick coverage.

Lastly, Green Velvet boxwood, Buxus ‘Green Velvet’, stands out among its peers with its rapid growth combined with its capacity to maintain a compact and rounded shape even without frequent pruning. This characteristic makes it an excellent choice for both low border hedges and statement topiaries.

Remember, while fast growth rates can deliver speedy landscape results, it’s also important to consider the overall health and quality of the plants. Boxwood, like any plant, grows best when given the proper care and optimal growth conditions.

Boxwood Growth: Sunlight Requirements and Optimal Conditions

The vitality of boxwood is influenced by its exposure to sunlight. An ideal situation grants these plants a sheltered spot with dappled shade during the day. However, they can also adapt to full sun or full shade, speaking to their versatile nature.

Soil quality stands as another determining factor for boxwood health. These shrubs appreciate well-drained, slightly acidic soil, rich in organic matter. Overly wet or dry conditions will stress the plant, possibly stunting its growth.

Temperature and humidity play their roles as well. Boxwoods can prosper in diverse climates, being hardy in USDA zones 4 to 8. They prefer regions with moderate temperature and humidity, yet can tolerate a broad range of environments if cared for properly.

Lastly, the spacing of boxwood shrubs is integral to their growth pattern. To ensure healthy growth and a dense formation, it’s pivotal to plant these shrubs with enough distance in between. This allows the plant to receive adequate sunlight and air circulation, preventing potential issues like boxwood blight and other diseases.

Understanding Boxwood Growth Rate

Boxwoods are renowned for their slow growth rate, typically averaging less than 12 inches per year. This means, under ideal conditions, a boxwood may only add approximately one foot to its height annually — but variations can occur between species.

Japanese boxwoods, for instance, can witness a slightly faster pace, up to 12 to 24 inches each year, injecting quick dense foliage into the landscape.

On the other hand, American boxwoods’ growth, considered moderate, ranges from 6 to 8 inches per annum, making them a preferred choice for owners aiming for a more controlled growth.

Remember, these rates can be influenced by factors such as soil quality, watering habits, sunlight, and overall plant health. Understanding these nuances helps in choosing the right cultivar depending on the desired landscape effect and maintenance level.

Where to Plant Boxwood for Optimal Growth

When considering the placement of your boxwood, select a location that benefits from partial shade to full sun. Boxwood roots prefer cool soil. Therefore, select a location that offers some shade during the day. Moreover, boxwood thrives in well-drained soil. Poorly-drained or soggy soil can lead to root rot.

Ensure to space these shrubs properly for optimal growth. For compact and hedge planting, space them 2-3 feet apart, and for individual plants, maintain at least 5 feet distance between the plants. Overcrowding can result in competition for resources, leading to inhibited growth.

While the boxwood can adapt to a variety of soil types, it grows best in loamy soils with a pH range from 6.5 to 7.0. Testing the soil before planting can help secure the optimal conditions for growth. Lime can be added if the pH level is below 6.5, to neutralize it.

Conclusively, ensure to consider factors such as light exposure, soil type, and spacing when planting boxwood to aid in achieving its optimal growth.

Caring for Fast-Growing Boxwood: Planting and Maintenance

Fast-growing boxwood varieties require appropriate care to ensure healthy development. Begin by planting during the cooler parts of the year in spring or early fall, ensuring the root ball remains level with or slightly above the soil surface to prevent waterlogging. Boxwoods prefer well-drained soils with a pH between 6.5 and 7.2. Applying a layer of mulch aids in holding moisture and suppressing weeds, while also protecting roots from temperature fluctuations.

In terms of water, boxwoods don’t enjoy waterlogged roots, but they do need a consistent supply, particularly during dry spells. For a balanced growth, annual feeding in early spring with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer formulated for evergreens is highly beneficial.

Regular pruning aids in maintaining the desirable shape and promoting denser growth. However, it’s crucial to prune at the correct time of year – late winter or early spring – to avoid damage from freezing temperatures. Weekly inspections for signs of pests or diseases will allow for early detection and intervention, ensuring the long-term health of the plant.

An appropriate care routine for your fast-growing boxwood not only promotes robust growth but also enhances the visual appeal of your landscape by maintaining the plant’s dense, leafy structure.

Boxwood Cultivar Characteristics: Mature Size and Hardiness Zones

Selecting the right boxwood cultivar is fundamental as it directly impacts growth, hardiness, and mature size. Hardiness Zones, a climatic standard devised by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), inform gardeners about potential plant survival in their location.

Common varieties like ‘Wintergreen‘ and ‘Japanese‘ are hardy, meaning they can tolerate varying weather conditions, and fall in USDA Zones 5 to 9 and 6 to 9, respectively. Resistant to boxwood blight, these cultivars reach a mature height of approximately 4 feet. Demonstrating fast growth, they can add 12 to 18 inches each year.

On the other hand, the ‘Green Velvet‘ cultivar thrives in USDA Zones 5 to 8 but possesses a slower growth rate. This variety is a solid choice for those desiring a smaller, dense shrub, as it only reaches a height and width of 3 to 4 feet.

Remember, when making a choice, find a balance between your landscaping necessities, the plant’s mature size, and the climatic conditions of your region.

How to Increase Boxwood Growth Speed

Fertilization is crucial for the rapid development of boxwood. Add a slow-release granulated fertilizer in early spring, preferably blended specifically for shrubs and trees. The ideal soil pH for boxwood ranges between 6.5 to 7.0, neutral to slightly alkaline.

Watering your boxwood plays an essential role in their growth speed. Deep watering encourages root development and hence, faster growth. However, avoid over-watering as it can lead to root rot.

Pruning is beneficial for healthier growth and should be done annually in early spring before new growth starts. This process stimulates branching and results in a denser plant.

Mulching helps to maintain soil moisture levels and temperature, contributing to faster growth. Aim for a 2 to 3-inch layer of mulch around the base of the plant, ensuring it doesn’t touch the stem, to prevent fungal infection.

Lastly, the location of the plant in your garden can affect its growth. Placing your boxwood sapling in full sunlight or partial shade, and ensuring good soil drainage, can maximize the growth.

Boxwood Pests and Diseases: Prevention and Treatment

An integral part of maintaining boxwood’s speedy growth involves understanding pests and diseases which may hamper their progress. Protective measures and effective treatments can keep the plants thriving.

1. Infestations: Common pests include boxwood leafminer flies, boxwood mites, and nematodes. Regular inspection for tiny, deformed leaves, blister-like blemishes, or discoloration can help detect early signs of infestation.

2. Prevention: Practices such as proper spacing, regular pruning to improve ventilation, and ensuring healthy soil conditions can considerably limit the onset of pests.

3. Treatment: Insecticidal soaps or horticultural oils can effectively combat pests. Apply these treatments early in the morning or late afternoon to prevent leaf scorch.

4. Diseases: Two common diseases that affect boxwoods are boxwood blight and root rot. The former results in dark leaf spots and rapid defoliation, while the latter is usually due to overwatering or poor drainage.

5. Disease Control: Fungicides are the most effective means of managing these diseases. Choose rainfast varieties and apply them regularly during wet periods.

6. Hygiene: Ensure gardening tools are clean before use, try not to water the leaves directly, and avoid working in the garden when it’s wet to stop disease transmission.

Knowledge and implementation of these prevention and treatment strategies can foster healthier, faster-growing boxwoods, free from harmful pests and diseases.

Boxwood Blight Tolerance and Leafminer Resistance By Cultivar

Many boxwood species demonstrate a commendable resistance to common pest problems and diseases. To ensure lasting beauty, it’s crucial to choose cultivars with the highest tolerance levels.

For instance, ‘Wintergreen‘ boxwood, a Korean variety, is praised for its resistance to boxwood blight, a devastating disease that can cause rapid defoliation and death. Similarly, ‘Green Mountain‘ is a resilient cultivar, exhibiting substantial tolerance to the notorious boxwood leafminer, a pest that causes disfiguration of leaves.

With a notable mention, the English boxwood, ‘Suffruticosa,’ carries inherent resistance to both boxwood blight and boxwood leafminer, making it an ideal candidate for worry-free landscaping. The ‘Green Gem‘ boxwood also possesses commendable resistance properties against common boxwood ailments.

Remember, each cultivar’s tolerance can be affected by the plant’s overall health and environment. Regular care and timely intervention are key in ensuring the plant’s resilience.


Which boxwood grows the fastest?

The fastest growing boxwood varieties are Sprinter, Winter Gem, and Wintergreen, which typically grow 4-6 inches per year.

Which boxwood grows 20 feet tall?

The American boxwood (Buxus sempervirens), also known as common boxwood, can grow up to 20 feet tall.

How fast do Japanese boxwoods grow?

The Japanese boxwoods exhibit a slow growth rate, typically less than 12 inches per year, and can mature up to 5 to 6 feet in height and 4 to 6 feet in width.

How long does it take for wintergreen boxwood to grow?

The Wintergreen Boxwood, a slow-growing shrub, typically grows 2-3 inches annually and reaches maturity, exhibiting a height of 2-4 feet and width of 3-5 feet.

What conditions accelerate the growth rate of boxwood plants?

Boxwood plants grow more rapidly in well-drained soil, partial to full sun exposure, and with regular watering.

Are there specific cultivation techniques to quicken the growth of common boxwood?

Yes, common boxwood growth can be quickened by adequate watering, maintaining soil pH between 6.5 and 7.5, balanced application of nitrogen-rich fertilizers, and regular pruning to encourage denser growth.

Which variety of boxwood is most resistant to common plant diseases?

The variety of boxwood most resistant to common plant diseases is the 'Green Velvet'.