People have always been drawn to nature for inexplicable reasons, creating gardens and landscapes filled with beautiful plants. Ornamental horticulture, as an industry, has prospered and grown through the centuries by cultivating beauty. Plants are bred and selected because they possess qualities that make them desirable. It could be because of the taste of the fruit, the shape or structure, or due to being pest and disease resistant but, arguably the most common trait growers, breeders, and gardeners are looking for is allure.
During the National Boxwood Trials, researchers evaluated boxwood on two major categories; impulse cosmetics and grower friendliness. Impulse cosmetics describes the immediate reaction a person has while walking by a specific variety of plant, either in a landscape or on the shelf at a garden center. Although the reaction could be either positive or negative, Paul Saunders, the initiator of the Trials, describes this initial reaction the “WOW factor.” He describes WOW as, “the factor that adds character and impact in a garden.” Even as gardeners have moved more towards plants that solve problems with pest resistance or tolerance to adverse conditions, the WOW factor remains an absolutely essential aspect for the success of any plant.
This was an important consideration as we made the selections of NewGen Independence® and NewGen Freedom®. Both plants outperformed other generic boxwood as solution plants for pests and diseases, but not at the expense of attractiveness. With these plants, the beauty lies in the rich, shiny, deep green foliage that maintains its veneer twelve months of the year. The full, fluffy shape of the plants pulls in any passerby, encouraging them to interact with the plants.
NewGen Independence® has a more elegant style, sought after for more formal garden settings. The deep green foliage stands out as a specimen or serves to accentuate brightly colored flowers around it. The strong branches give it a rounded habit that withstands even heavy snow loads providing grace in the garden through every season.
NewGen Freedom® stands out because of its its shiny green foliage and uniform habit. In a landscape it appears fluffy, inviting you to touch and connect with it, without sacrificing its structure.
Though boxwood may lack some of the more flamboyant characteristics that catch the eye of onlookers such as bright flowers or colorful foliage, they have a timeless elegance, accentuating any landscape. Boxwood are known for providing structure and being malleable to fit a specific need. NewGen Independence® and NewGen Freedom® provide that and more. These plants were chosen not only as the problem solvers they are, but for their timeless beauty, lasting in the landscape for generations to come.