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Japanese Boxwood Buxus microphylla var. japonica

Other plants called Japanese Boxwood:

Phonetic Spelling
BUK-sus my-kroh-FY-lah vah-RY-eh-tee jah-PON-ih-kah
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Evergreen shrub to 6.5', loose and rounded.  Prefers well-drained soil with slight acidity to slight alkalinity in dappled to partial shade.  It can grown in full shade but will become leggy and sparsely foliated.  It is a slow growing shrub and sensitive to over-fertilization.  Drought, deer, rabbit, and nematode resistant.  New growth may be injured by frost.

Commonly seen as a houseplant or in an interiorscape.  In the landscape, it works well as a low hedge, foundation plant, edging, or shrub border.  It is very tolerant of pruning ad sheering but do not prune before the last spring frost date or new growth will be damaged.  Propagate by stem cutting or the plant will self-seed in optimum growing conditions.

Quick ID Hints:

  • Leaves opposite, apex rounded or notched
  • Stems square and winged (decurrent petiole)
  • Midrib with white cottony pubescence below
  • Leaves about one inch long and often as broad

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  This plant can be challenging to grow.  Boxwoodmites and leaf miners can affect stressed plants.  Blight and leaf spot can affect plants.  Root rot occurs in poorly drained soil.  Foliage burns in hot summer suns or harsh winter winds.  

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#poisonous#houseplant#specimen#shrub#slow growing#interiorscape#accent plant#rabbit resistant#hedges#cpp#edging#shrub border#foundation planting#self-seeding#fantz#evergreen shrub#hedge#bad smell#malodorus#sheering#small leaves
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#poisonous#houseplant#specimen#shrub#slow growing#interiorscape#accent plant#rabbit resistant#hedges#cpp#edging#shrub border#foundation planting#self-seeding#fantz#evergreen shrub#hedge#bad smell#malodorus#sheering#small leaves
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Buxus
    Species:
    microphylla
    Family:
    Buxaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Wood was used to make boxes, hence the common name.
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Japan
    Dimensions:
    Height: 6 ft. 0 in. - 8 ft. 6 in.
    Width: 10 ft. 0 in. - 15 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Poisonous
    Shrub
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Dappled Sunlight (Shade through upper canopy all day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    3 feet-6 feet
    6-feet-12 feet
    12-24 feet
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Green
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Insignificant
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Description:
    Small, green to cream insignificant flowers in axillary clusters, 4-parted. Apetalous (no petals).
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Small, opposite, simple leaves, broadest above the middle. Typically obcordate and just as broad as long, rounded or notched apex; petiole fused to stem (decurrent) with white cottony midrib below. Foliage green, but sometimes has yellowish-green leaves, malodorous.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Cross Section:
    Square
    Stem Description:
    Square and winged.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Houseplants
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Barrier
    Foundation Planting
    Hedge
    Specimen
    Problems:
    Contact Dermatitis
    Frequent Disease Problems
    Frequent Insect Problems
    Poisonous to Humans
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    CAUSES ONLY LOW TOXICITY IF EATEN. SKIN IRRITATION MINOR OR LASTING ONLY FOR A FEW MINUTES. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, convulsions, respiratory failure; contact with cell sap may cause skin irritation
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Steroidal alkaloids
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    Yes
    Poison Part:
    Leaves