Box hedging has been the staple plant for formal garden hedges across the UK for many hundreds of years. But lately, the emergence of box blight (a disease causing dieback), and box tree caterpillar (Cydalima perspectalis) has led to the search for more robust alternatives for some parts of the UK where these have become a problem.
Fortunately, along comes Ilex crenata, and more particularly the selection 'Green Hedge'. Despite its common name of Japanese Holly, the leaves are not prickly, and are small and round, very closely resembling Buxus (Box) - almost identical in fact - although probably a darker green if anything. It is equally easy to trim and thrives on a regular pruning as a hedge, yet is more robust and a little more vigorous in growth.
Plants are not prone to leaf scorch when pruned so are ideal for more exposed situations and Japanese Holly also regenerates from old wood so can be re-shaped if it has been a bit neglected. As Ilex crenata is generally tougher than buxus, it's good for northern or cold areas.
For quickest establishment of dwarf hedges plant this size out all year round at 20cm (8in) spacing and use in the same situations as you would box - smaller low hedges to separate areas, border edging, lining paths etc. However, is also vigorous enough to produce larger topiary too if allowed to grow.
Supplied as a pack of 25 trimmed plants in 9cm pots. Contact us for prices on larger volumes.