Baby Gem Boxwood Shrub
Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs are aptly named. As popular and lovely as they may be, most boxwood shrubs have a habit of having of their shiny green foliage turning to a shade of bronze and even brown during harsh winter months. Baby Gem Boxwood is an exception to this rule. Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs naturally stays shorter and more compact than its big brother Boxwood Winter Gem. They are also ideal for defining different spaces in the garden or for using as a foundation plant. It is especially lovely when planted against red brick.
- Species: Microphylla
- Other Species Names: Littleleaf Box, Japanese Boxwood
- Plant Height: 36 in.
- Spread: 36 in.
- Evergreen: Yes
- Plant Form: Round
- Emergent Foliage Color: Chartreuse
- Summer Foliage Color: Green
- Minimum Sunlight: Partial Shade
- Maximum Sunlight: Full Sun
- Dig a hole twice as wide as the root system but not deeper. you should still be able to see the soil the plant was grown in after back-filling the hole.
- Depending on the quality of your existing soil you may need to add a locally sourced compost or topsoil to the back-fill soil.
- We do not recommend using straight topsoil or compost as a back-fill soil because more times than not these products will retain entirely to much moisture and will cause the root system to rot.
Bio-tone starter fertilizer provides plants with mycorrhizae fungus. It is a naturally occurring beneficial fungus that colonizes on the new growing roots of plants. It creates a barrier between the roots of the plant and fungus and pathogens that can cause root rot.
How do I water my Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs?
After back filling and lightly compacting the 50/50 mix of existing soil and compost give the Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs a good deep watering. This is not to be rushed. Most of the water you put on the plant at first will run away from the plant until the soil is soaked. A general rule of thumb is to count to 5 for every one gallon of pot size. For example a one gallon pot would be watered until you count to 5 a three gallon pot would be 15 and so on. Gator bag Jr. can be used to help aid in this process and also provide plants with a good soaking due to the slow release of the water into the root-zone of the plant. Soaker Hoses can also be used to water when planting a long hedge.
What are the benefits of mulching a Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs?
We definitely recommend that you mulch your Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs with either a ground hardwood mulch or a ground cypress mulch depending on your local availability. Any type of mulch will do but cypress or hardwood mulch will be of a higher quality and provide better nutrition overall as they breakdown. Mulching helps to keep weeds away which will compete with your new investment for water and nutrients. A 2 to 3 inch layer of mulch is sufficient but remember to take care not to cover any part of the stem of the plant with mulch. Its better to leave a one inch gap of space between the mulch and the stem or trunk of the Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs.
When type of fertilize should I use for my Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs?
Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs grow best if they are fertilized once in the spring and again in early summer. Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs benefit from an fertilizer which can help raise the acid level of the soil such as Holly-Tone by Espoma. When selecting a fertilizer for your plant, if soil Ph is not an issue a simple balanced fertilizer can be used such as Tree-tone. Espoma products are easy to use, just sprinkle around the base of the plant and water it in. Be careful with products such as miracle-grow as these products can burn newly planted plants when not used at the recommended rates. Slow-release fertilizer can help prevent rapid sucker growth that is vulnerable to diseases and insects.
How do I prune my Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs?
To maintain Baby Gem Boxwood Shrubs in their most natural shape, thinning is the most appropriate way to prune for an informal look. To thin, prune selected branches throughout the shrub to the main trunk, to a lateral branch or to a lateral bud. The older and diseased branches can be pruned to the ground. This method of pruning allows the center to receive light and air, improving the health of the shrub. Boxwoods have a tendency to become very dense This not only can cause fungal diseases, but also causes the leaves to grow just on the edges of the shrub.
The inside of the boxwood then turns brown where leaves have died due to a lack of light. Thinning allows the leaves to grow along the entire branch, not just the tips, resulting in a fuller look. Thinning can be done any time of the year except about six weeks before the first frost. The best time to thin would be mid- to late February before new growth starts. This takes advantage of the first flush of growth, which is the best growth of the year.
If a formal look is desired, prune with shearing or hedge clippers in a pyramidal shape with the narrowest part of the bush at the top, tapering to a wider base. This shape will allow adequate light to reach the lower part of the shrub so the foliage will remain full all the way to the ground. To maintain desired size and shape, this time prune after boxwood's have completed their main spring growth. When using it as an hedge, begin pruning when the shrub is young rather than waiting several years until it has achieved a lot of growth. Pruning early causes the shrub to become thicker at the bottom rather than being thin or open at the base. Once it is dense enough at the base, pruning can be eased, so to not cause death of the center leaves. When shearing trim in one direction and then go back and trim the opposite way so that it’s top line is smooth and has no dips.
Rejuvenation: At times, very old and misshapen boxwoods are going to need rejuvenation. It should be done in late winter or early spring, over a period of several years. Some experts say you should remove a third of the large branches each year over three years. Follow any hard pruning and shaping of boxwoods with a dose of fertilizer and a light layer of mulch.
* Plant installation warranty
-15 Day warranty on installation
-Warranty cost: 25% plant cost
50% Labor cost
-If lack of water, the warranty is null & void.