Author: James Todman

  • Supporting Hydrangea ‘Annabelle’ with Box Hedging

    Hydrangea ‘Annabelle’ is a beautiful shrub. Large white balls of flowers on long stems from the end of July and into August. But this variety of hydrangea has a reputation for flopping due to the size of the flower heads. Wire supports help but they don’t look great. A natural support is box hedging. I […]

  • How to manage Box Blight

    The fungal disease box blight attacks Box (Buxus) and can result in twiggy patches and dieback. Box blight was first recognised in the mid 1990’s and has now become a real problem in many gardens all over the UK, especially with warm and damp weather. What is Box Blight? Box blight is a fungal disease that […]

  • My Top Three Topiary Shears

    Over the years I have developed quite a collection of topiary shears. They all have their own different characteristics, and that’s not just the price. Some work better on thicker stemmed shrubs, others are more suitable for a faster clipping action – a lot depends on their weight, balance and type of steel used to […]

  • Improve Yew Hedges by Removing Vertical Stems

    If a yew has been left untrimmed, or has been badly clipped in the past, then thick, long stems can start to grow up on the outside of the hedge. These will thicken over time, causing the hedge to bulge and sag. Improve Yew Hedges Appearance A yew should have short green, lateral growth on […]

  • Mysterious Brown Circles Appearing on Box Hedging

    I want to share with you a problem someone had with their box hedging that surrounds a lawn area. Brown circular patches were appearing on the grass side of the box hedge, all at roughly the same height. The owner’s Labrador was accused of causing the damage so I was pleased to exonerate the dog […]

  • Mussel Scale on Box

    Mussel scale is a small insect that attaches itself to the stems of a box plant and sucks the sap. This can cause the foliage to discolour, turning yellow and orange. If the scale are left untreated the box may start to lose leaves and will have poor growth in the Spring. Have a close […]

  • Five Ways to Beat the Box Tree Caterpillar

    You will know if you have box tree caterpillar in your garden because of the damage it can cause. Buxus can be stripped of their leaves in a very short period of time. If left untreated, then the box tree caterpillars will eventually kill the plants. But there is a good chance the Buxus will […]