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Buxus sinica

Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Buxus microphylla subsp. sinica
Phonetic Spelling
BUK-sus SIN-ih-kah
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Korean boxwood is a broadleaf evergreen shrub in the Buxaceae (boxwood) family and native to China and Taiwan. Buxus is the Latin name for boxwood or box tree. The common name of boxwood refers to the wood used to make carved decorative boxes. Another etymology is that boxwood describes the square stems of its young plants. 

It can be grown in average garden soil with medium moisture and good drainage in full to partial sun. Its preference is for moist, sandy loam with slightly acidic to slightly alkaline pH in partial sun. In colder winters, the leaves may turn bronzy. The variety 'Wintergreen' has improved winter color for northern climates.

Korean boxwood can be pruned as a privacy screen, used as a border plant or in a rock garden, and even grows well in containers.

Insects, Diseases and Other Plant Problems: Blight and leaf spots are occasional foliar diseases. Root rot can be a problem in poorly drained soils.

 

For suitable alternatives, see this video created by Charlotte Glen as part of the Plants, Pests, and Pathogens series.

VIDEO Created by Elizabeth Meyer for "Trees, Shrubs and Conifers" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.

More information on Buxus.

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • var. insularis
    Hardier
  • var. insularis 'Justin Brouwers'
    Green throughout the winter
  • var. insularis 'Nana'
    Low growing
  • var. insularis 'Sunburst'
    variegated foliage
  • var. insularis 'Wintergreen'
    Maintains better winter color
var. insularis, var. insularis 'Justin Brouwers', var. insularis 'Nana', var. insularis 'Sunburst', var. insularis 'Wintergreen'
Tags:
#evergreen#small spaces#drought tolerant#broadleaf evergreen#slopes#cottage garden#rabbit resistant#topiary#hedges#privacy#deer resistant#foundation planting#rock gardens#border planting#english garden#screening#courtyard#evergreen shrub#walkway planting#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses#shearing#container plants
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • var. insularis
    Hardier
  • var. insularis 'Justin Brouwers'
    Green throughout the winter
  • var. insularis 'Nana'
    Low growing
  • var. insularis 'Sunburst'
    variegated foliage
  • var. insularis 'Wintergreen'
    Maintains better winter color
var. insularis, var. insularis 'Justin Brouwers', var. insularis 'Nana', var. insularis 'Sunburst', var. insularis 'Wintergreen'
Tags:
#evergreen#small spaces#drought tolerant#broadleaf evergreen#slopes#cottage garden#rabbit resistant#topiary#hedges#privacy#deer resistant#foundation planting#rock gardens#border planting#english garden#screening#courtyard#evergreen shrub#walkway planting#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses#shearing#container plants
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Buxus
    Species:
    sinica
    Family:
    Buxaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    China, Taiwan
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 10 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 4 ft. 0 in. - 20 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Shrub
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Spreading
    Maintenance:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    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:
    12-24 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Insignificant
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Description:
    Insignificant greenish-yellow separate male and female flowers in spring
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Glossy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Oblong
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Bright green lustrous oblong leaves 1 1/2" long
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Cross Section:
    Square
    Stem Description:
    Square stems
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Slope/Bank
    Walkways
    Landscape Theme:
    Cottage Garden
    English Garden
    Rock Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Foundation Planting
    Hedge
    Mass Planting
    Screen/Privacy
    Small groups
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Drought
    Problems:
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs
    Problem for Horses
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Dogs and cats: vomiting, diarrhea; Horses: colic, diarrhea, respiratory failure, seizures
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Alkaloids
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No