Help for yellowed boxwoods!

Asked May 30, 2019, 10:49 AM EDT

My boxwoods (and hundreds I see around town) have yellow leaves on top, but otherwise seem healthy. This is the first year I have noticed this. What has happened (harsh winter?) to the boxwoods? And what should I do? Will the yellowed leaves die and fall off? Should I trim them off? Will they survive? Thank you

Hennepin County Minnesota

1 Response


Thank you for your question.

Your boxwoods are likely suffering from winter burn. This condition is described in the following article by the Missouri Botanical Garden. This winter was very hard on boxwoods and it is rare to see one that hasn't been affected in some way. The few with no damage were probably covered with snow through most of the winter.

The article presents some options depending on the severity of the problem. If the damage is only on the tips or is slight, you may wait it out and see what the new growth looks like before taking further action. Or you can just snip off the tips. If the damage is deep and severe, some pruning out of the dead material can be considered.This would open up the damaged area to light and encourage new growth.

Unless they are severely damaged, they will likely recover.