11 Green Velvet Boxwoods Planted Under Espaliered Linden Trees - June 2023
A few weeks ago, I posted back-to-back photos and posts showing how I dug out and transplanted a number of perennials including hostas and alliums to prepare the bed at the feet of the espaliered Greenspire Linden trees for a replanting of evergreen (Boxwood) shrubs. I opted for Boxwoods underneath these two trees as part of my 2023 to-do list (#1 was evergreens) and this area was my #1 priority.
I originally planned for a full, staggered double hedge of Boxwoods and I bought 13 Boxwoods. Seven Green Mountain for the back row. And six Green Velvet for the front row. The one gallon boxwoods at the orange big box nursery went on sale recently and I bought when the price dropped.
I started by cutting the new (further out) edge of the bed and had to deal with locating the cable line in the ground. I was careful to not cut that cable, so I mostly dug out by hand with my hori hori. I then went and measured the spacing for the 13 boxwoods. In order to try to not disturb the roots of the Lindens too much, I dug *those* holes, too, by hand.
Here's the back row of boxwoods with their spacing eyeball'd under the Lindens and the current edge of the bed - which I knew I needed to extend.
I opted for 32" spacing all directions around the boxwood. I dug the location of the holes and popped the 1 gallon shrubs in the spots. Here's what they looked like partially-dug-in below:
Here, below, is a further-back look at the the full 13 shrubs in their temporary holes.
A few things became apparent once I had them in their temporary spots. First...the Green Mountain boxwoods were not right. The height below the lowest level of the espalier is just about three feet. No sense in planting a shrub that will fill in MORE than that space. The Green Velvets in the front row get about 32 to 36" tall total. That's better.
Second...the boxwoods on the far edge - in particular the one closest to the house was going to encroach on the walkway/path quite a bit. See below for the placement. If this shrub grew out 18", the path would be quite narrow. So, that one has to go. That means...to be symmetrical....the other one on the end needed to go.
That took my 13 Boxwoods down to 11. Seven in the back row. Four in the front. I had six Green Velvet boxwoods already, so I needed five more. I went back to the big box store and exchanged five of the Green Mountains for Green Velvets. I kept the two extra Green Mountains for planting elsewhere.
Below is the 'after' photo - showing eleven Green Velvet boxwoods planted under the trees and the newly, expanded edge of the bed that took up a little bit of turf. I planted EACH of these with a heavy-dose of municipal biosolids and their native soil.
Yep, they're small. But, I'm good with that. As a reminder...here's the before:
For now, the plant material is a downgrade size-wise, but I'm thinking in the mid-term (Say...next year or the year after), I'll be much happier with these evergreen shrubs. I'll also plan on digging in some sedges and/or other groundcover in-front-of/besides these to fill out this bed.
Below is a after-and-before comparison of this bed: