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Faded Buxus leaves

Morning All. i have a customer with a number of very expensive topiaried buxus, in pots. Since trimming them the leaves appear to be dying, they are a very light green and easy to pull off the plants. I am told he waters them regularly and the soil was John Innes and specifically for re potting when they were installed about a year ago. There is no apparent evidence of the caterpillar and he sprays them with a preventative spray recommended by the plant supplier.  Could they be revived with a feed or do I need to cut out the faded areas? Any advice gratefully recieved, thank you.

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  • i find box best trimmed on a dull cloudy day as the sun burns them when freshly done, they will recover though

    •  Thanks for the reply BB, that is good to hear. 

  • I have a few clients with Buxus. They have to be trimmed on the day I am at their gardens, although I waited later than usual due to the wet weather. So when I have trimmed it was on that nice hot week, when we had summer, a couple or 3 weeks ago.

    Most of them have had scorched leaves unfortunatley, not much we can do about it if that happens as you have to trim sometime, but not when it's too damp, as one of these hedges, 30M long, already has had some blight hit it. Yes it looks unsightly for a few weeks but these leaves will die & drop off & the new growth will come through soon enough. If you explain this to your client, emphasis that they had to be cut sometime, whilst dry, to avoid blight, he should understand.

    Just a note, i spray all of my clients Buxus to stop caterpillars. On two jobs this week whilst doing so (one being the 30M hedge) I have seen a number of BT moths fly out of the hedges, so the little critters are still busy laying atm!!! I am in Surrey, near Reigate, so prolific here.

    • Thanks Neil. I actually do very little plant care, just basic ground maintenance and to be honest my heart sank when the client asked me to trim these sculpted buxus. About 15 carefully spiralled plants with a string of battery powered lights adorning each one that needed taking off and wrapping back on. Some jobs you don't need and although I've shaped them nicely they do look a little sad now the leaves are dry and faded. I have done this job for a long time and it is always the jobs you never fancied that come back to bite you!

  • Was the equipment used for the trimming sharp, with properly set and clean blades? Leaves can be "smeared" between the blades but not cut off and they end up looking a bit like what you have described. Sunny, drying weather speeds up the yellowing effect. 
    Rubbing over the affected areas can knock a lot of dead stuff off which looks a bit better but they will grow out of it.
    Me and her enjoy going round open gardens and I often see examples of box which has been cut ready for the big day but ends up looking like this.


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