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How to Keep Topiaries Full & Green

By Jaimie Zinski

Topiaries are plants and trees--such as ivy, boxwood and hydrangeas--that are trimmed and cut into shapes, from circles to circus animals. Dating back to the early civilizations of Greece, Rome and Persia, these decorative foliage pieces were sculpted for their artistic value and as a way to provide barriers. For the most part, topiaries are grown in small- to medium-sized pots and require constant reshaping and care to keep them looking lush, green and healthy.

Provide moist soil for the topiary. This is especially important if they are composed of ivy or boxwood, as these will turn brown quickly. This may require watering the plant one to two times per week. More water may be required during any drier weather.

Keep the topiary in an area that maintains a temperature of anywhere from 55 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Topiaries also prefer an outdoor environment that allows them access to partial sunlight throughout most of the day. Cover the topiary if it will be exposed to temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fertilize the topiary at least three to four times a year. This is especially important in the spring, which is the time of year the topiary will grow the most. A mild insecticide can also be used.

Trim and prune the topiaries on a weekly basis. This will help maintain the topiary's shape while removing any dead or dying sections of the foliage. Use a pair of bypass pruners to remove any longer sections of growth.

Provide each individual topiary enough space to grow and soak up air and sunlight. To allow each plant its own optimal growing conditions, the topiary pots and branches should not touch.


Things You Will Need

  • Fertilizer
  • Insecticide
  • Bypass pruners

About the Author


Residing in Chippewa Falls, Wis., Jaimie Zinski has been writing since 2009. Specializing in pop culture, film and television, her work appears on Star Reviews and various other websites. Zinski is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in history at the University of Wisconsin.