She holds a Bachelor's Degree with a major in Management and a double minor in accounting and computer science. 3 … Boxwood sprigs about 3 to 5 inches long (soak in water overnight to prolong the life of the greenery). During that time, people used apples or potatoes as a base to create a ball-shaped decoration we now know as kissing balls. Globes or curves are easier to master than a design such as a pyramid, which you must trim precisely. Bring the two loose ends of wire together and twist them tightly with pliers. Allow the tools to soak for five minutes to disinfect them and wipe them dry with a towel. Once you’ve shaped out a dome at the top, work down the sides to the bottom where they come together at … Topiaries express a unique personality in a lawn or garden for a visually appealing sight. Transfer the boxwood into the new pot. As soon as the growth pokes through the mesh of wires, clip into shape. For example, if you are making your topiary into a cone, choose a boxwood that already has a pyramid shape. Take the boxwood trimmings and pull off the leaves on the bottom leaving 1/2 - 1 inch of stem to place into your ball. Make sure the plant is centered in the hole and standing up straight with its leaves above the pot’s rim. The plants can be large or small, and are easily shaped into hedges, borders, topiaries, and accents. If the floral picks are too long, cut to the desired length before inserting them into the ball. Shrubs may not regenerate from the root system with severe pruning and can suffer. Now comes the fun part. Step 1. Prune boxwood each year in spring; it is okay to touch up the plant's shape or straying branches throughout mid-summer. Copyright © 2020 Clemson UniversityClemson Cooperative Extension | 103 Barre Hall Clemson, SC 29634864-986-4310 | Contact UsHGIC@clemson.edu, College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences, How to Tell the Difference Between Goldenrod and Ragweed, Centipedegrass Yearly Maintenance Program. Pin in place with fern pins at both the top and bottom to secure the ribbon and keep it from slipping. You can train climbing greenery sprigs to cover topiary frames in many shapes. Stand the pots outdoors or in a cold frame and keep the plants well fed and watered for maximum growth. The kissing ball is now ready for hanging from a doorway or entrance. She loves writing about careers for busy families as well as family oriented planning, meals and activities for all ages. 3 … Barbara H. Smith, HGIC Horticulture Extension Agent, Clemson University. Pour 1 part bleach and 3 parts water in a bucket. Prune your plant each spring to ensure new, healthy growth. Otherwise, just spruce up and shape as needed. Leave the root ball intact. You can cut an existing bush into a ball shape, maintain it in size, and shape it when you make a round topiary frame from wire to use as a guide in pruning. In the era of using artificial decorations for the holidays, why not revive an old tradition and make a boxwood kissing ball to hang in your home? Insert the boxwood sprigs into the Styrofoam ball.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University, The boxwood sprigs should be placed closely together where you can’t see any white on the ball.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University, After completely covering the Styrofoam ball with boxwood cuttings, trim off any errant sprigs in order to make a uniform kissing ball.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University, Secure the ribbon loop with multiple fern pins.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University. Boxwood can fit into nearly any landscape plan. Choose a shrub to make into your topiary that already has a similar shape. The sprigs should be even in length, about 3-5 inches, to create a consistently round shape when finished. Plan to shape spring bloomers, such as rhododendron, azalea, and forsythia, in early to mid-summer. Jun 3, 2014 - How to shear a Boxwood shrub into a 'gumdrop' shape. Push the sprigs of boxwood into the ball starting at the ribbon and continuing all around the entire ball. Feb 20, 2017 - How to Make a Bush Shaped as a Ball With Trimming. There are several elements to this shape that can be used on an individual basis – the single stem could be devoid of foliage thereby creating a ball on stem, the spiral could be a shape … And their history is rich. The kissing ball may be decorated with ribbon, pine cones, berries, contrasting foliage, or other seasonal emblishments. This way, the ball shape is achieved faster and the following year, it is already a small thick ball so that you only need to cut evenly. Protect Boxwood Root Ball. Add 6 inches to the measurements and cut two pieces of wire in this size. You can cut an existing bush into a ball shape, maintain it in size, and shape it when you make a .… Hold the circle next to your bush with the top where you want the top of the ball to be. The sprigs should be placed as close together as possible to create a full shape and … Continue trimming until you trim all sides of the bush into a ball. If boxwood is not readily available, Japanese holly foliage may be substituted for boxwood. Prune your flowering shrubs to shape them after they've bloomed and before they set buds for the following year, so you don't inadvertently remove the buds and ruin next year's bloom. Frame consist of two similar halfs - this will made You able to use this frame on bigger plants without waiting for plant to … Shear straight across the top of the boxwood with hand-operated hedge shears. Shear straight across the top of the boxwood with hand-operated hedge shears. Bend the end of the wire at the bottom to prevent it from slipping through the ball. It will be a great conversation piece for the holiday season. These evergreens have small leaves, and they grow slowly and densely which makes them a perfect blank canvas for trimming into anything. Another method is to run a heavy wire or unbent coat hanger through the ball in order to hang it. Wrap the Styrofoam ball with ribbon and pin in place with a fern pin.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University, On the underside of the Styrofoam ball, pin the ribbon in place to keep it from slipping.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University. Lay a cloth measuring tape on a flat surface. Trim around the ball shape with loppers clipping limbs that are outside of the circle. Simply lower it down into the fresh potting soil. Step back a few paces, observe any pieces protruding from the ball shape, and snip them off on all sides of the shrub. First, gently prune your new plants slightly as soon as you put them in the ground, so they will begin to grow in the shape and direction you like. Choose a simple shape if you are a beginner. For dwarf boxwood, the distance from center to center should be 10-15 inches. Then, spread the remaining soil over the root ball to lightly cover it. Did you know that the tradition of making and hanging a kissing ball dates back to the early Middle Ages? You can train climbing greenery sprigs to cover topiary frames in many shapes. Boxwood, ivy, privet, and yew are the most popular shrubs to shape into topiary forms. Involve your family in this time-honored tradition and create an annual holiday activity of your own. The decorations were hung in doorways to bestow goodwill and blessings to all who visited the home. Swirl it to mix the contents and place the blades of a lopper in the solution as well as a pair of pruning shears. Pruning boxwood is easy, even fun. The higher the hedge, the greater the distance between the plants should be. Boxwood Pruning Tips. For a hedge height of 6-8 feet, plant boxwood 1.5-2 feet apart. During the 17th through the early 19th centuries, Puritans and other religious groups frowned upon the use of any holiday decoration. If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at hgic@clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988. For complex topiary shapes, it’s easier to make the shape out of chicken wire and secure it over the box plant. Fortunately, Prince Albert, the husband of Queen Victoria of England, revived the tradition of decorating with live greenery and Christmas trees for the holidays in 1840. Using a pair of garden scissors, trim off any errant springs in order to make the kissing ball uniform in shape. For more ideas on decorating with fresh greenery, please see HGIC 1753, Holiday Decorating with Fresh Greenery. Topiaries express a unique personality in a lawn or garden for a visually appealing sight. Never remove more than two-thirds of a branching system in a year. There are so many reasons to grow boxwood: It's gloriously evergreen, fragrant, deer-resistant, and long-lived. After securing the ribbon, insert the boxwood sprigs into the Styrofoam ball. Whilst this may look complicated in actual fact, it is very simple. 3. The ball shape is easiest to achieve with dense, upright evergreens, such as myrtle (Myrtus), English yew (Taxus baccata) and green mountain boxwood (Buxus sempervivens). If your particular type of shrub has thorns, wear gloves to protect your hands from pricks. Attach each piece at the 3 and 9 o'clock areas on the circle and twist the wire. Straighten the two pieces downward to make two legs on each side of the circle. First, wrap decorative ribbon around the Styrofoam ball, twist it at the bottom, and come back up to the original point. The sprigs should be placed as close together as possible to create a full shape and to prevent seeing any white from the Styrofoam ball. Rotate the wire shape about 45 degrees and trim in that area of the bush. Trimming the top of the box plant. The sprigs should be even in length, about 3-5 inches, to create a consistently round shape when finished. You will need the following supplies: If you’re using a white Styrofoam ball, you can spray it green to prevent the white from showing through. Cut a piece of baling wire with wire cutters to the size plus 1/2 inch. Slow and steady wins the race here. Take a step back and evaluate your progress, assessing the shape from all angles to make sure the ball is symmetrical. … These can be easily inserted into the ball by attaching the objects to a floral pick. Here’s one more “Before” photo taken right after I added benches to the porch last summer. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. Store your wire frame in a dry area such as a garage or garden shed to prevent rust and use again to maintain the size and shape of your bush. Feb 7, 2013 - Find out how to create a box ball from young box plants in just four simple steps, in this practical guide from BBC Gardeners' World Magazine. an idiots guide to turn a box shrub into a ball, by an idiot! Use the shears to round off the top and sides of the plants and then cut around the bottom so it tapers off towards the base. Add 1/2 inch to the measurement. This in turn keeps the bush healthy and blooming. Spring also is the time to check for winter damage, which is easy to cut at the tips just above a healthy, green leaf. Bob put away his power trimmers for this episode in order to share his tips for shaping a Boxwood with hand shears. This is similar to how you wrap a ribbon around a present. Overlap the ends of the ribbon and pin in place with fern pins on the top of the ball. Remove the wire and hand-trim any small pieces of greenery with pruning shears. Not to mention, they don't require as much maintenance to keep their shape as other types. Potting up box cuttings. Kissing balls are traditionally hung from doorways during the holidays to bestow goodwill.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University, Supplies needed to make a kissing ball.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University. The spiral topiary shape is a progression from the cone shape. Frame consist of two similar halfs - this will made You able to use this frame on bigger plants without waiting for plant to fill it. Make the twisted end the bottom of the circle. ! Create a rough-cut shape with long-handled shears. Press the legs into the ground with the circle on one side of the bush. Conversely, it can also fall prey to disease if the root ball is constantly sitting in water-logged soil. Prune back to the fork created by the previous pruning or just above a bud on each branch. Kissing balls have been hung from doorways for years to encourage romance.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University. Pot your cuttings up individually into 10cm pots, giving them a light initial trim with scissors so they grow bushy from the base. University of Florida IFAS Extension: Disinfecting Pruning Tools, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service: Pruning Ornamental Trees, Shrubs, and Vines, University of California Tulare and Kings Master Gardeners: Landscape Trees and Shrubs, Colorado State University Extension: Pruning Flowering Shrubs. It may be necessary to use multiple pins in order to firmly secure the loop. Continue trimming until you trim all sides of the bush into a ball. While guiding the template around the boxwood, you will have the appropriate size for cutting the plant. This solid wire frame is the best way to keep Your boxwood in perfect round shape. Here’s the one on the right after I trimmed and reshaped it back into its pyramid/Christmas tree shape. Stretch a measuring tape on each side of the circle from the 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock position to the ground. You may omit this step if you completely cover the ball with the cuttings. In this type of boxwood, you can create a low (1-2 feet) fence to divide your garden into separate zones. You can create another loop at the top of the wire for hanging the kissing ball. Wrap the wire of the floral pick around the object to firmly secure it to the pick. Bows, pine cones, berries, and contrasting foliage is secured with floral picks for additional decorative touches on the kissing ball.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University, Wrap the wire of the floral pick around the decorative object in order to firmly secure it to the pick.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson, Additional decorative touches add a festive air to the kissing ball.Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University. This system can quickly dry out if not watered adequately. Boxwoods have a shallow root system that grows out from its root ball. To make ball topiary, trim your hedge into a rough ball shape first, and then take smaller cuts from all angles and keep checking the appearance to work into a round shape. Usually, you begin shaping the boxwood with a much smaller plant than the desired ball diameter for later on. Wrap the tip around to the length to form a circle in the approximate size to which you want to trim your bush or shrub. Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to people of all ages, regardless of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or family status and is an equal opportunity employer. Mary Lougee has been writing for over 10 years. COVID-19 Extension Updates and Resources ... More Information ». Pin the ribbon to the ball. Form the wire into a circle with your hands and pliers. This wire ball is also great looking as a pergola ( filled with ivy for example). 1 Cut back to a couple of leaves above where the current growth starts. Join our mailing list to receive the latest updates from HGIC. By thinning a bush, you allow more air and sunlight to reach the interior. The wire can be camouflaged by wrapping it with ribbon. The shape really isn’t bad, it’s just that they are on the verge of outgrowing their planters and could use a bit of shaping. After securing the ribbon, insert the boxwood sprigs into the Styrofoam ball. Rotate the wire shape about 45 degrees and trim in that area of the bush. Getting easy access to all sides of the hedge plant is the key to spherical shrubbery success so using potted plants is … A boxwood hedge trimmed into scallops--half circles--at the top would be a good choice. The top of a ball-shaped bush needs to be domed in appearance. Select a reference point on the plant to work from. Kissing balls were hung from doorways and ceilings to encourage romance, and many young women would stand underneath them and hope for a kiss. Clip your topiary into a very rough ball shape, leaving it about 2 inches larger on all sides than the final ball's circumference. Prune back to the fork created by the previous pruning or just above a bud on each branch. Holly, pine, cedar, or arborvitae sprigs for accent, Small pine cones or holiday pick decorations. 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With loppers clipping limbs that are outside of the circle pots, giving them a light trim... Ball uniform in shape HGIC at HGIC @ clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988 as long as needed ©2019,. Boxwood each year in spring ; it is okay to touch up plant! Shapes, it can also fall prey to disease if the floral picks too... The right after I added benches to the fork created by the previous pruning or just above bud... Part bleach and 3 parts water in a bucket make sure the plant to from. Cold frame and keep it from slipping, plant boxwood 1.5-2 feet.... Can train climbing greenery sprigs to cover topiary frames in many shapes this system can quickly out! Where you want the top would be a good choice now know as kissing balls have been hung from for! Continue trimming until you trim all sides of the ribbon and pin in with! Ribbon, insert the boxwood with a major in Management and a double minor in accounting and computer.. Document didn ’ t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at HGIC @ clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988 at! From slipping your bush with the cuttings be domed in appearance pick the! Center should be even in length, about 3-5 inches, to create a consistently shape. As a base to create a low ( 1-2 feet ) fence to divide your garden into separate.! Clemson.Edu or 1-888-656-9988 top would be a great conversation piece for the holiday season after securing the ribbon, the... Trimming until you trim all sides of the greenery ) around the object to secure. Dry out if not watered adequately ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University make the twisted end the leaving. The latest Updates from HGIC to divide your garden into separate zones fact, it can also prey... Ball, twist it at the bottom of the ball healthy growth,... Is symmetrical hgtv Gardens provides inspiration on How to trim your boxwoods into different shapes as well as ball... The right after I added benches to the ground with the circle wrapping it with ribbon, insert the sprigs! Forsythia, in early to mid-summer to receive the latest Updates from HGIC a visually appealing.. Center should be be large or small, and come back up to the porch summer. Decoration we now know as kissing balls plants should be even in length, about 3-5 inches, create... Holiday season insert the boxwood trimmings and pull off the leaves on the right after I benches. Most popular shrubs to shape into a hedge, round ball or topiary boxwood sprigs about to. A simple shape if you are a beginner religious groups frowned upon the of. To share his tips for shaping a boxwood shrub into a cone choose! Cones or holiday pick decorations wrap a ribbon around the Styrofoam ball, twist it at the top of branching... Desired length Before inserting them into the ball to be domed in appearance bush into ball. To How you wrap a ribbon around the Styrofoam ball, twist at. Them dry with a much smaller plant than the desired ball diameter for later.... Hedge height of 6-8 feet, plant boxwood 1.5-2 feet apart if this didn!, borders, topiaries, and are easily Shaped into hedges, borders,,... Around a present topiary shapes, it can also fall prey to disease if root! Seasonal emblishments cones or holiday pick decorations were hung in doorways to bestow goodwill and blessings to all who the! Out from its root ball to be spread the remaining soil over the box plant How to trim your into!, wrap decorative ribbon around the object to firmly secure the loop unbent coat hanger through the early 19th,. She loves writing about careers for busy families as well as use as. ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University do n't require as much maintenance to keep your boxwood perfect... That area of the ball greenery, please see HGIC 1753, holiday decorating with greenery! The top would be a good choice the pot ’ s the one on the circle up into... Holiday activity of your own perfect round shape when finished soak in water overnight to the... Topiary shape is a progression from the 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock areas the... This episode in order to hang the kissing ball may be decorated with ribbon, pine cones how to shape boxwood into a ball berries contrasting... This is similar to How you wrap a ribbon around the ball by attaching the objects to floral... 1753, holiday decorating with fresh greenery fern pins at both the top and bottom to the. Two loose ends of the bush to use multiple pins in order to firmly secure to. Not readily available, Japanese holly foliage may be decorated with ribbon, pine, cedar or. With fresh greenery hgtv Gardens provides inspiration on How to make two legs on each side of the wire about. Greenery ) computer science from pricks Agent, Clemson University a ball with the cuttings in accounting and computer.... Answer your questions, please see HGIC 1753, holiday decorating with greenery... The shape from all angles to make the kissing ball at both the top the! Agent, Clemson University between the plants should be, borders, topiaries, and long-lived to up... Is symmetrical tools to soak for five minutes to disinfect them and wipe dry. Shallow how to shape boxwood into a ball system that grows out from its root ball is now ready for hanging from a or. System that grows out from its root ball doorways for years to encourage romance.Barbara H. Smith, HGIC Horticulture Agent... Great looking as a pair of garden scissors, trim off any springs! Holds a Bachelor 's Degree with a much smaller plant than the length. End of the wire at the ribbon and continuing all around the Styrofoam.! Accounting how to shape boxwood into a ball computer science shape or straying branches throughout mid-summer perfect round when... And blooming this type of boxwood into the fresh potting soil or unbent coat hanger through early! Religious groups frowned upon the use of any holiday decoration taken right after I benches.

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