To keep his neat pyramid shape he’ll need a light trim at the end of summer. Use sharp secateurs.
Letting him dry out can lead to crispy leaves, so try to make sure his soil stays lightly moist.
A shady spot
He’s happiest in either full or partial shade. If you put him in intense sun he’s likely to dry out quickly.
While we love his pyramid shape, you can train Peter into any shape you like. Let your topiary imagination run wild.
Common box; European box
Plant height (including pot)
Toxic if eaten
Nursery pot size
About common box
Box is grown in gardens around the world because its dense foliage makes it perfect for hedging. With enough patience and trimming it can be grown into any shape imaginable. All those wild topiary sculptures you see in fancy gardens? They’re box. This one has been trimmed to a cute pyramid shape. It looks great lining paths, either side of a doorway, or smartly arranged on a balcony or patio.
Box grows natively across many parts of Europe, Asia and Africa. In the wild it might grow up to 9 metres tall (it grows in a general tree shape, rather than anything unusually sculptural). It’s an evergreen, so it will keep its leaves year-round, and in summer it should grow some small, highly-scented yellow flowers.
It’s a slow grower, so it should keep its shape without too much upkeep. If needed, give it a trim toward the end of summer, when it’s finished its year growth spurt. If you want it to grow more quickly, a feed once per month in spring and summer will give it a boost
Did you know?
Because box grows so slowly, its wood is extra hard and greatly prized for making furniture.