Box is an incredibly useful and versatile plant in the garden. Not only is it naturally dense, offering a form of privacy to your outdoor space, but can be used for formal hedging, low borders, and pathway edging too – not to mention its frequent use as topiary.
However, as useful as box is, it’s no longer a sustainable option. The species is unfortunately under threat.
What was once a go-to option for homeowners, box now faces two main problems: box blight and box tree caterpillar. Both can adversely affect the health and vitality of box plants, creating a real difficulty when it comes to keeping them alive and healthy.
Whether you already have the issues of box blight or box tree caterpillar in your garden, or want to avoid these potential problems altogether, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we explore 5 practical alternatives to the box plant.
1. Yew (Taxus baccata)
For many homeowners, Yew (or Taxus baccata) is the replacement plant of choice. A British native that withstands hard clipping and can be grown as topiary or a low hedge.
Like box, yew clips to a dense, smooth surface, and will also recover (slowly) from renovation pruning. As a like for like alternative, Yew is probably your best bet.