Topiary – ideas and expert advice on clipped evergreens

A multi-tasking feature, topiary is ideal for developing a strong punctuation reason for a garden planting plan, for presenting low shapes to edge pathways and also to add definition to containers.

If you value the feel of clipped evergreens, choose lollipop bay trees, smart box topiary balls and pompom conifers as topiary suggestions to add strong shapes which help to define your outside space.

Topiary ideas really are a low maintenance type of gardening that appears good throughout the year, so the ideal choice to incorporate in your garden ideas.


Cube shapes are among the easiest topiary shapes to complete and are great for dividing different planting areas within the garden. Small pebble formed topiary can also be popular for edging pathways.

Within this garden design by Charlotte now Rowe topiary balls contrast with square box hedging.

Topiary suits a repeat design and works very well should you keep things symmetrical on each side from the garden, which could also produce the illusion that the space is larger than.

There are lots of choices for styles and shapes – have a great time creating shapes that fit design for your backyard, whether formal or even more informal and unique. The shapes may come towards the forefront inside a winter garden caught inside a hoar frost.

‘Topiary creates all scales, from country estates to small town gardens. Remarkable ability to change an area, frequently by simply just one presence, is highlighted in small gardens, where their leaves add interest and shadow throughout the day and make drama during the night, particularly when combined with lighting,’ states designer Kate Gould.

‘Yew, buxus and ilex are tough plants that may come to be large trees but they are equally happy clipped into hedges or shapes that may be both contemporary and traditional in feel,’ Kate adds.


Smartly clipped evergreens are a good option for enhancing entrances for example gates, doorways and porches.

In the winter months topiary adds necessary drama, punctuating an area when all of those other garden has little to provide.

Containers featuring clipped topiary designs will also be great for adding interest to some small space. Another plus is that you could switch them around to help keep things fresh. They may be underplanted with the best winter plants for containers and borders for additional color.

Topiary inside a planter can perform a lot more for any small space than several less impressive examples. If you are time pressured, they add impact without hrs of maintenance.


Typically, topiary has been utilized in classical formal gardens by means of cones, topiary balls and standards.

‘But for any more contemporary look that contrasts sculptural forms with sweeping planting, try including topiary like a punctuation mark inside a tapestry of naturalistic herbaceous perennials,’ suggests Shaun Stephenson, mind or horticulture at Bowles & Wyer.

For instance, ‘you could incorporate different sized yew domes within a carpet of hakonechloa,’ Shaun adds.

‘Defined and dramatically clipped forms deliver year-round architectural interest that people contrast against periodic perennials and grasses,’ explains top rated garden designer and landscape architect Gavin McWilliam of McWilliam Studio.


Frequently known as the bones from the garden, the evergreen structure could possibly be the beginning point for developing a garden design when the initial layout continues to be made the decision.

‘We regularly include topiary within our designs to supply structure and rhythm within our planting,’ states Gavin McWilliam. When coupled with other evergreen trees for gardens , topiary can produce a strong backbone for that garden.

‘The most of the topiary forms make certain with would be the evergreens taxus, pittosporum and Prunus lusitanica. However, we like to utilize beech and hornbeam when contextually relevant,’ Gavin adds.


However abundantly we may plant out backyards, in fact for a lot of several weeks of the season your garden depends on evergreens for structure and form.

‘Topiary really makes its very own within the quieter several weeks of later winter and springtime once the herbaceous planting is reduce, and also the new shoots of spring are yet to look,’ states Gavin McWilliam.

When making an outdoor, it’s vital that you consider periodic greenery and topiary is a superb choice among your winter garden ideas. ‘As along with formally clipped hedges and topiary balls or any other shapes, consider making more informal ‘lines’ of plants with sarcococca, osmanthus, or perhaps a soft pillow cloud of Lonicera Pileata Maigrun, that is good for ground cover,’ explains garden designer Lee Bestall.

Retro classics for example taxus and buxus, which both respond well to regular clipping, offer structure and mass, in addition to being perfect combined with warm white-colored fairy lights.