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Japanese Holly vs Boxwoods

Posted by katycopsey Z7GA (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 18, 06 at 21:44

Hope this isn't too basic a question for this forum, but I am having a hard time telling the difference between Japanese hollies and some boxwoods. They both seem to have the same size/shape leaf and petiole, similar color, growth patterns, clippable. So I am foxed. Is there are definable thing that gives one away???
I have one or the other/or both. Maybe one gets red berries??

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Japanese Holly vs Boxwoods

I note that you have recently moved to the south. As a northener you have an interesting learning curve ahead.
To answer your question....Boxwood has an opposite leaf pattern and all hollies have alternating leaf patterns. Also, in the heat of day you will notice a distinctive foxy or cat urine odor eminating from the boxwood. Many find this odor disagreeable. Of the two types of shrubs I prefer the Japanese holly as it does not die out in the middle and is less prone to mite damage.

RE: Japanese Holly vs Boxwoods


Can you post a picture? I have had both for years, and much prefer the boxwood. I fell in love with boxwood when visiting Williamsburg . . . especially the Abby Aldrich garden. As with all types of plants, varieties will make for differences. I have not known any boxwood to have berries--but I am not an expert, just a boxwood lover. Recently I visited a home I had done the plantings on 30 years ago--of what I had planted and what now remains--a boxwood hedge and a dogwood tree.

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