Container Gardening: How to Plant Boxwoods in Planters

Evergreen boxwoods and terra cotta planners provide year-round greenery and a timeless, beautiful aesthetic to any patio or garden. My gardening journey began with a few boxwoods and evolved into topiaries, pachysandra, and these planters. These evergreens are easy enough to maintain and are perfect for adding interest to any outdoor space. Keeping then alive and damage-free is fairly easy unless you live somewhere with extreme weather, like I do. 

When I decided to plant boxwoods in planters, I initially planned on adding smaller upside-down planter for height and fill with packing peanuts. After one trip to Christy Webber in downtown Chicago, I was advised against this method. It is best to mimic natural conditions, so filling the pot with soil vs. a an additional pot and peanuts to fill space is best practice for allowing the plant to thrive. 

If you live in an area with harsh winters, it is important to note that these plants are susceptible to winter burn. To prevent winter damage, add a layer or two of bubble wrap to the inside of the planter – this will protect the plant’s roots. We plan on using a dolly to bring our boxwoods into the garage during winter. Wrapping the greenery with burlap or bringing it indoors will protect it from snow. 

My planters and gardening tools are linked here. 


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  • Boxwoods are such a classic choice. I did the same for ease of a year round green. I’m no expert, but was told different Boxwoods have different tolerances or hardiness. The garden center suggested “Green Mountain Boxwood” which has a hardiness from -20 to -10F. They survived the past winter in planters (just soil, though big planters with at least 3” of soil on each side for insulation) outside in Eastern PA. I put a smaller trailing plant at the base for extra green around the planter.