What to Plant in Front of Boxwoods? – An Ultimate Guide for Landscaping Enthusiasts

Colorful annuals such as impatiens and begonias are suitable for planting in front of boxwoods. These plants offer a vibrant contrast to the typical dull green foliage of boxwoods.

Impatiens and begonias are low-growing and do not compete for sunlight with boxwoods.

Credit: plantophiles.com

Important Considerations Before Planting In Front Of Boxwoods

Boxwoods are a popular addition to many gardens and landscapes. These evergreen shrubs provide year-round greenery and serve as a great backdrop to other plants. When it comes to selecting the right plants to plant in front of boxwoods, it’s important to consider a few key factors to ensure that the plants complement the boxwoods instead of overpowering them.

Selecting The Right Plants

Choosing the right plants to plant in front of boxwoods is crucial to create a visually appealing landscape.

  • Growth rate: choose plants that have a similar growth rate to boxwoods to ensure that they don’t quickly outgrow or overtake the boxwoods.
  • Size: consider the mature size of the plants to make sure they fit well in front of the boxwoods.
  • Color: choose plants with colors that complement the color of the boxwoods. For example, if the boxwoods are dark green, consider planting lighter colored flowers or foliage in front of them.
  • Texture: mix plants with different textures to create a more interesting landscape.
  • Maintenance requirements: choose plants that have similar maintenance needs to the boxwoods to avoid creating extra work for yourself.

Planning The Layout And Design

Once you have selected the plants that will complement the boxwoods, it’s time to plan the layout and design.

  • Create a focal point: consider adding a centerpiece plant in front of the boxwoods to create a focal point in the landscape.
  • Layer plants: plant taller plants in the back and shorter plants in the front to create depth and interest.
  • Use repetition: repeat the same plants or group of plants throughout the landscape to create a cohesive and polished look.
  • Fill in empty spaces: fill in gaps or bare spots with groundcovers or low-growing plants.
  • Use mulch: cover the soil with a layer of mulch to help retain moisture and suppress weeds.

By taking into account these important considerations before planting in front of boxwoods, you can create a beautiful, harmonious landscape that will enhance the overall look of your garden.

Plant Selection: Best Plants To Grow In Front Of Boxwoods

Boxwoods are a popular choice for landscaping due to their vibrant green appearance and easy care. However, planting the right flora in front of these evergreens can enhance their beauty and add depth to your landscape. Whether you are planting in front of a formal hedge or a more relaxed setting, there are numerous plants that can complement boxwoods and add an extra layer of texture.

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Here are some best plant selections to thrive in front of boxwoods.

Colorful Plants

Adding pops of color can enhance the beauty of boxwoods. Here are some plants that can fit the bill.

  • azaleas: these shrubs burst with vibrant pink or white blooms in early spring and grow well in partial shade.
  • hydrangeas: these plants come in an array of colors and grow in partial shade. They bloom all summer, adding a splash of color to your landscape.

Variegated Plants

These plants sport eye-catching patterns on their leaves that can give an extra pop of visual excitement to your landscape.

  • variegated hostas: these hostas boast striking green and white leaves and grow well in partial shade.
  • euonymus: this hardy evergreen shrub comes in multiple varieties, all with variegated leaves in shades of green and yellow.

Texture Plants

By adding texture to your landscape, you can create an alluring, layered look that stands out.

  • ornamental grasses: these plants come in different heights, textures, and colors, and can add extra depth to your landscape.
  • lambs ear: this groundcover is renowned for its silver-gray foliage which contrasts with the bright green of boxwoods.

Low Maintenance Plants

For a no-nonsense planting, something that grows fast and requires minimal maintenance will be suitable for the front of boxwoods.

  • rosemary: this shrub is popular for its aromatic foliage and blue blooms in spring.
  • sedum: this easy-to-grow ground cover plant comes in various colors and requires almost zero maintenance.

Boxwoods are lovely as evergreens, but they can be even more stunning when accompanied by the right plants that complement and enhance their beauty. By adding some color, texture, and variety, you can bring extra dimensionality to your landscape, making it all the more pleasing to the eye.

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Top 5 Complementary Plants To Grow In Front Of Boxwoods

Boxwoods are one of the most popular shrubs used in landscaping. They provide a beautiful, green backdrop to any garden, and their evergreen foliage adds texture and depth. But with the right complementary plants, you can take your garden to the next level.

Here are five plants that go great in front of boxwoods.

1. Hostas

Hostas are the perfect partner for boxwoods. These leafy plants come in a variety of sizes, colors, and textures, making them a versatile addition to any garden. They provide a beautiful contrast to the fine texture of boxwoods, and their broad leaves add depth and interest.

  • Growth rate: moderate.
  • Size: 1-4 feet tall and wide.
  • Color: green, blue-green, gold, variegated.
  • Texture: smooth, glossy, ribbed, textured.

Why it’s an excellent addition: hostas are low maintenance and easy to care for. They can tolerate different light conditions, including shade, partial shade, and full sun. They are also versatile and can be used in different garden styles, from traditional to contemporary.

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2. Coral Bells

Coral bells, also known as heucheras, are another great option for complementing boxwoods. They are prized for their colorful foliage, which comes in shades of green, purple, burgundy, silver, and gold. They add a pop of color to any garden and provide a beautiful accent to the greenery of boxwoods.

  • Growth rate: moderate.
  • Size: 6-18 inches tall and wide.
  • Color: green, purple, burgundy, silver, gold.
  • Texture: smooth, shiny, fuzzy.

Why it’s an excellent addition: coral bells are easy to care for and can tolerate a variety of soil types and light conditions. They are also deer resistant, making them a great choice for gardens in deer-prone areas.

3. Russian Sage

Russian sage is a tall, elegant perennial that pairs well with boxwoods. It produces masses of soft, lavender-blue flowers that bloom from midsummer to fall. The airy, silver-gray foliage adds a wispy texture to the garden, creating a beautiful contrast to the boxwoods’ structure.

  • Growth rate: fast.
  • Size: 3-5 feet tall and wide.
  • Color: lavender-blue flowers, silver-gray foliage.
  • Texture: wispy.

Why it’s an excellent addition: russian sage is drought-tolerant and low maintenance, making it an ideal plant for hot, dry climates. It also attracts beneficial pollinators like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds to the garden.

4. Liriope

Liriope, also known as lilyturf, is a grass-like plant that grows well in front of boxwoods. It produces spikes of lavender-blue flowers in late summer and early fall, adding a burst of color to the garden. The evergreen foliage also provides a wonderful contrast to the boxwoods’ dense structure.

  • Growth rate: slow to moderate.
  • Size: 12-18 inches tall and wide.
  • Color: lavender-blue flowers, dark green foliage.
  • Texture: grass-like.

Why it’s an excellent addition: liriope is easy to care for and can tolerate a variety of soil types and light conditions. It is also deer resistant, making it a great choice for gardens in deer-prone areas.

5. Knockout Roses

Knockout roses are a popular choice for gardeners looking to add color to their garden. They produce vibrant, double-petaled blooms in shades of pink, red, and yellow. They can be grown as small shrubs, making them an excellent complement to boxwoods.

  • Growth rate: fast.
  • Size: 3-4 feet tall and wide.
  • Color: pink, red, yellow.
  • Texture: smooth.

Why it’s an excellent addition: knockout roses are disease-resistant and low-maintenance, making them easy to care for. They bloom continuously from spring to fall, providing long-lasting color to the garden. They are also deer resistant, making them a great choice for gardens in deer-prone areas.

Planting complementary plants in front of boxwoods can enhance the beauty of any garden. Hostas, coral bells, russian sage, liriope, and knockout roses are five great options that provide color, texture, and interest. They are easy to care for and can tolerate various soil types and light conditions.

Try them out in your garden and see the difference they can make!

Maintenance Of The Plants In Front Of Boxwoods

Boxwoods are popular landscape plants that add classic beauty to any yard or garden. They form an excellent backdrop for other plants in front of them, such as perennials, groundcovers, or small shrubs. But, like any other plants, the vegetation in front of boxwoods requires proper care and maintenance to ensure their health and vibrant appearance.

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Provide Details Of The Care And Maintenance Requirements For The Plants That Are Grown In Front Of Boxwoods.


  • Water the plants in front of boxwoods deeply and thoroughly at least once a week, particularly during the hot summer months.
  • Make sure the soil is adequately moist but not waterlogged as it can cause root rot and other fungal diseases.
  • The moisture needs of plants may vary, depending on their type, so always check the soil moisture before watering.


  • Apply a balanced slow-release fertilizer to the plants in front of boxwoods in early spring and late summer.
  • Make sure to use a fertilizer with equal, or almost-equal, proportions of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (npk).
  • Over-fertilizing can cause overgrowth, leaf burn, or other problems, so follow the fertilizer manufacturer’s instructions carefully.


  • Trim the plants in front of boxwoods regularly to prevent them from overshadowing your boxwoods.
  • Use clean and sanitized pruning shears to stay away from diseases and infection spreading from one plant to another.
  • Never prune more than one-third of the plant’s foliage in a single season, as it can harm its growth and health.

Other Essential Maintenance Tips

  • Mulch the soil in front of boxwoods with organic materials, such as bark nuggets or wood chips, to retain moisture and keep weeds at bay.
  • Keep a regular eye for pest and disease damaging your plants. Some common pests that damage garden plants are spider mites, scale insects, whitefly, and the japanese beetle.
  • Avoid planting invasive or aggressive plants in front of boxwoods. They can out-compete your smaller plants and make them struggle for survival.

Highlight Common Errors To Avoid While Maintaining These Plants.

  • Do not plant the vegetation in front of boxwoods too deep into the soil, as it can interfere with their root’s oxygen supply.
  • Do not allow the soil in front of the boxwoods to become too compacted. Compacted soil can impede water and nutrient movement, leading to diseases.
  • Do not let the soil in front of the boxwoods dry out between watering sessions.
  • Do not use heavy pruning on hedges near the root systems.
  • Do not use a pruning shears for multiple bushes without properly sterilizing the tool between cuts.

By following the tips mentioned above and avoiding common mistakes, anyone can keep their vegetation in front of boxwoods healthy, happy, and attractive.


Choosing the right plants to pair with your boxwoods can make a huge difference in the overall look of your garden. With a wide variety of colors, textures, and heights to choose from, there’s no limit to the combinations you can create.

Consider your climate and soil conditions when selecting your plants, as well as the scale of your landscape and the vibe you’d like to create. Whether you opt for annuals, perennials, shrubs, or grasses, the key is to choose plants that compliment your boxwoods without competing with them.

With a little bit of planning and creativity, you can create a stunning garden that will be the envy of your neighbors. So, get out there and start experimenting!