Korean Boxwood (Buxus Sinica Var. Insularis ‘Wintergreen’)

Plant: Table of Contents

All About Korean Boxwood (Buxus sinica var. insularis ‘Wintergreen’)

What is Korean Boxwood?

Korean boxwood, scientifically known as Buxus sinica var. insularis ‘Wintergreen’, is a compact, broadleaf evergreen shrub characterized by its dense, lush foliage and slow growth habit. With its vibrant green leaves and versatile nature, Korean boxwood is a popular choice for landscaping and garden design.

Key Takeaways – Korean Boxwood (Buxus sinica var. insularis ‘Wintergreen’)

  • Korean boxwood (Buxus sinica var. insularis ‘Wintergreen’) is a versatile and visually appealing shrub that offers numerous landscaping and garden design opportunities.
  • The shrub thrives in a variety of conditions, making it a low-maintenance addition to outdoor spaces.
  • Korean boxwood requires well-draining soil, regular watering, and partial to full sunlight to flourish. Proper pruning and fertilization also contribute to its long-term health and vitality.



Korean boxwood is widely utilized in landscaping and horticulture for various purposes, including:

  • Hedging: The dense foliage and compact growth habit of Korean boxwood make it an excellent choice for creating hedges and borders in gardens and landscapes.
  • Topiary: Its malleable nature allows it to be shaped and pruned into diverse topiary forms, adding artistic elements to outdoor spaces.
  • Containers: Korean boxwood can be grown in containers and used to accentuate patios, decks, and other outdoor areas.


Korean boxwood has moderate water needs. It prefers consistently moist, well-draining soil. While it is important to keep the soil moist, it is crucial to avoid overwatering, as waterlogged soil can lead to root rot and other issues.


This shrub thrives in partial to full sunlight. Providing adequate sunlight is essential for promoting healthy growth and maintaining the vibrancy of its foliage.


Applying a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring can provide the necessary nutrients for Korean boxwood’s optimal growth. It is important to ensure that the chosen fertilizer is suitable for evergreen shrubs and to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application.


Korean boxwood thrives in well-draining, slightly acidic to neutral soil. A pH range between 6.5 and 7.2 is ideal for its growth and overall health.


Proper pruning is crucial for maintaining the shape, density, and overall appearance of Korean boxwood. Pruning can be done to control its size and shape, rejuvenate the plant, or remove damaged or diseased branches.

Pruning Timing

The best time to prune Korean boxwood is in late winter or early spring before new growth emerges. Pruning during this time allows the shrub to recover and produce new growth with the onset of the growing season.

Pruning Techniques

When pruning Korean boxwood, it is essential to use sharp, clean pruning tools to make precise cuts. Some common pruning techniques for this shrub include:

  • Shearing: This technique involves shaping the shrub into geometric forms, such as squares or spheres, and maintaining a defined silhouette.
  • Thinning: Thinning out excess growth and overcrowded branches helps improve air circulation and light penetration, resulting in a healthier plant.


Korean boxwood can be propagated through several methods, including:

  • Cuttings: Propagation from stem cuttings is a popular and effective method for creating new plants. Semi-hardwood cuttings taken in late summer or early autumn can root well under the right conditions.
  • Layering: Air layering or ground layering are suitable techniques for propagating Korean boxwood, allowing the plant to develop roots at a specific point on the stem while still attached to the parent plant.

Container Popularity

Korean boxwood is particularly well-suited for container gardening, offering versatility and aesthetic appeal in various outdoor settings. Container-grown Korean boxwood can be used to complement patios, balconies, and terraces, and it can serve as a focal point or accent plant in garden designs.

Common Diseases

Korean boxwood is susceptible to certain diseases that can impact its vitality and appearance. Familiarizing yourself with these common diseases and their symptoms is essential for early detection and appropriate treatment.

Disease Diagnosis

Common diseases affecting Korean boxwood include:

  1. Boxwood Blight (Calonectria pseudonaviculata): This fungal disease causes leaf spots, stem cankers, and defoliation, leading to the decline of the plant if left untreated.
  2. Boxwood Leafminer (Monarthropalpus flavus): The larvae of this insect feed within the leaves, causing yellowing, blistering, and leaf drop.
  3. Volutella Blight (Volutella buxi): This disease causes leaf spots, dieback, and pink fungal growth on affected plant parts.

Common Pests

In addition to diseases, Korean boxwood may also face challenges from various pests that can compromise its health and appearance.

Common pests that affect Korean boxwood include:

  • Boxwood Psyllid (Psylla buxi): These tiny insects cause damage to the leaves by feeding on plant fluids, leading to distorted growth and reduced plant vigor.
  • Boxwood Mites (Eurytetranychus buxi): Mite infestations can result in stippling, yellowing, and bronzing of the foliage, impacting the overall aesthetics of the plant.

Botanist’s Tips

To ensure the successful cultivation and care of Korean boxwood, consider the following tips:

  1. Regular Monitoring: Regularly inspect your Korean boxwood for signs of pests, diseases, or any other issues that may affect its health.
  2. Proper Nutrition: Providing the shrub with the right nutrients through well-timed fertilization can significantly contribute to its long-term vitality.
  3. Prudent Pruning: Exercise care and precision when pruning Korean boxwood to maintain its shape and encourage healthy growth.
  4. Prompt Action: If you notice any signs of disease or pest infestation, take prompt action to mitigate the issue and prevent further spread.

Fun Facts

  • Korean boxwood belongs to the family Buxaceae, which includes several other boxwood species known for their ornamental value and versatile uses in landscaping.
  • The evergreen nature of Korean boxwood allows it to retain its foliage throughout the year, providing consistent greenery in outdoor spaces.
  • Korean boxwood has been cultivated and appreciated for centuries for its aesthetic appeal and suitability for various garden designs.

Links to External Resources

For more information on Korean boxwood and related topics, refer to the following external resources:

  1. Korean Boxwood: A Versatile Landscaping Shrub
  2. Caring for Buxus sinica var. insularis ‘Wintergreen’
  3. The Art of Pruning Korean Boxwood
  4. Identifying and Treating Common Diseases of Korean Boxwood
  5. Pest Management Strategies for Korean Boxwood

In conclusion, Korean boxwood (Buxus sinica var. insularis ‘Wintergreen’) is a valuable addition to gardens and landscapes, offering aesthetic appeal, versatility, and relatively low maintenance requirements. By understanding its cultural needs, potential challenges, and best practices for care, enthusiasts and horticulturalists can successfully cultivate and enjoy the timeless beauty of this evergreen shrub.

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Peter Taylors

Expert botanist who loves plants. His expertise spans taxonomy, plant ecology, and ethnobotany. An advocate for plant conservation, he mentors and educates future botanists, leaving a lasting impact on the field.