In the ancient world, boxwood was considered a precious plant because of the similarity of wood with jade with
wood was considered a precious plant because of the similarity of wood with a jarFor the extraordinary hardness and density, allowing the tree not to sink in the water, it was called "iron".Also, the box was considered a talisman, protecting against the intrigues of dark forces and fulfilling cherished dreams. In modern life it is one of the favorite plants used in landscape design, and just to decorate the interior of a house or apartment. All over the world, souvenirs, jewelry, dishes and even musical instruments are made of it.
Box in nature
Box is a tree or shrub growing under natural conditions in the Mediterranean, China, Japan, Central America and East Africa. It grows very slowly. In addition, it can be called a long-liver. The age of some specimens reaches 500 years. The box is listed in the Red Book. It can grow where other plants will not survive: in dark moss-covered forests, among shrubs and on calcareous soils.
All parts of the plant are poisonous, especially the leaves.
Types of Boxwood
The genus of boxwood has several dozen species. The most common ones are:
- Box Evergreen ( Buxus sempervirens), widely used in decorative gardening sites. In its natural habitat reaches a height of 15 meters, at home - 6 meters. It tolerates frost well, but is extremely sensitive to thaws and the bright sun. Has 3-centimeter leaves of an oval form and dark green color.
- Box small-leafed ( Buxus microphilla).The main difference from evergreen boxwood is smaller leaves( from 0.5 to 2.5 cm).
- The Balearic Box ( Buxus balearica), on the contrary, has larger leaflets - up to 4.5 cm.
- The Colchis Box( Buxus colchica) reaches 8 meters in height. The leaves are dark green, slightly curved inside.
Many decorative types of boxwood have been developed. Depending on the color of the leaves and the shape of the bushes among them:
- Aureovariegata has leaves with yellow spots;
- Marginata, its leaves are framed by a yellow border;
- Latifolia Maculata has golden leaves;
- CurlyLocks, the stems of which are twisted.
Box at home
Most often at home grow buxus evergreen. The photo of a boxwood tree shows how it can be used in the design of the plots. Tall trees are convenient to use as a hedge. An excellent solution would be a green wall, against which roses bloom.
Gardeners love to use boxwood as a border for flowerbeds, and also make a variety of shapes from the crown of a plant. To do this, as the bushes grow, the boxwood is cut, and the shoots are bent in the right direction using wire. You can regulate the process throughout the year. The most simple shapes: a cube, a cone or a ball.
If desired, you can make a bush in the form of, for example, an animal.
It does not take up much space, as it grows only 5 cm per year. Quite naughty, with improper care boxwood quickly sheds leaves. The best place to grow it is a moderately lit window sill. Boxwood is transplanted as needed, usually once every 2-3 years, and is tolerated quite well by the plant. He can take root in any period, excluding the winter.
Bucsus sempevirins is a moisture-loving breed, but one should not be too zealous. Its roots do not tolerate overwetting. Well, to save the soil from drying out, pebbles or moss can be laid on its surface. In spring and autumn, it is recommended to spray the leaves with water. In winter, the plant must be kept cool and this usually becomes the biggest problem. Production of a special greenhouse for wintering can become a way out.
For irrigation, it is not necessary to use filtered or separated water - the box is completely insensitive to water hardness. The only requirement: it should not be too cold.
With the onset of heat boxwood in a pot, it is desirable to put on the street, protected from direct sunlight. It will feel good in the shade of trees or on a well-lit veranda. In autumn, when the first cold weather approaches, the plant should be brought back. At home, boxwood blooms extremely rarely. Usually before the appearance of the first flowers takes about 20 years. The flowers of the plant are small and not very beautiful, yellow.
If you do not provide conditions favorable for plant growth, the pests of boxwood may soon be felt. Usually it is a spider mite or scythe. To combat them, the plant is being washed by lathering the soil with a film. Washing pests, rinse the tree under the shower.
Box are propagated by cuttings in spring or autumn. Seed propagation is not so popular. The cuttings take root difficult. Out of 100 pieces, only 80 will be able to take root at best.
It is recommended to grow tow in warm climates. Although it is fairly resistant to cold weather, the box in the Moscow region is unlikely to survive the winter. The minimum temperature that it can withstand -15 degrees. Influences on the evergreen and strong winds. Therefore, to wait out the cold, boxwood can be placed on a cool veranda or loggia. Young shrubs need the most attention during the wintering period.
Useful Properties of Box
With all its toxicity, Boxwood is a very useful plant. It releases volatile production - active substances that destroy harmful microorganisms in the air. The most valuable bark and leaves of the plant, in which alkaloids, bioflavonoids, tannins, resin are found. In folk medicine, boxwood is used as a laxative, diuretic, diaphoretic, painkiller, it has an antiseptic effect. The plant is not used in official medicine.