Do you have a boxwood plant in your garden and have been noticing holes in the leaves? If so, don’t worry, you’re not alone. This is a common problem with boxwoods, and there are several reasons why it might be happening. In this blog post, we will discuss the causes of holes in boxwood leaves and how to fix them!
Why Are There Holes in Boxwood Leaves?
The boxwood leafminer is the most common cause of holes in boxwood leaves. This tiny insect bores into the leaves of the plant, causing them to develop small, round holes. The leafminer can also cause the leaves to turn yellow or brown and eventually drop off the plant.
There are other pests that can cause holes in boxwood leaves, including aphids, caterpillars, and beetles. All of these pests feed on the leaves of the plant, causing them to develop holes.
You may not even know you have a problem with pests until you see the damage they’ve done to your plant! If you suspect that pests are the cause of holes in your boxwood leaves, there are several things you can do to get rid of them.
How to Treat Boxwood Leaves with Holes?
It’s important to get rid of the cause as soon as possible to prevent further damage. If you believe that pests are the cause of holes in your boxwood leaves, there are several things you can do to get rid of them:
First, remove any affected leaves from the plant and dispose of them properly. This will help to remove the pests from the plant and prevent them from causing further damage.
Next, treat the plant with an insecticide or pesticide. There are many different products on the market, so be sure to read the labels carefully to find one that is specifically designed to kill the pests that are causing damage to your boxwood leaves.
Iâ€™ve had good success with Neem oil, which is a natural insecticide that works great for getting rid of pests. It’s made from the seeds of the neem tree and is safe to use in and around your garden.
Simply mix the neem oil with water according to the directions on the bottle and spray it on your plant. Be sure to cover the entire plant, including the undersides of the leaves, as this is where many pests like to hide.
Finally, make sure to keep an eye on your plant and inspect it regularly for signs of pests. If you catch the problem early, you’ll be able to get rid of the pests before they cause too much damage!
How to Keep Pests Away From Boxwood Leaves?
In addition to treating your plant with an insecticide or pesticide, there are several things you can do to keep pests away from boxwood leaves:
First, keep your garden clean and free of debris. This will make it less attractive to pests and make it easier for you to spot them if they do try to invade your garden.
Second, keep your tree healthy by watering it regularly and fertilizing it as needed. A healthy plant is less likely to be damaged by pests as they are more resistant to disease and pests.
Finally, consider using traps or barriers to keep pests away from your plant. There are many different products on the market that can help you do this, so be sure to find one that is specifically designed for the pests that are causing problems in your garden.
You can also use beneficial insects to help control pests in your garden. Beneficial insects are those that eat other insects, such as ladybugs and lacewings. These helpful bugs can be purchased at most garden stores or online.
What Else Causes Holes in Boxwood Leaves?
There are a few other things that can cause holes in boxwood leaves, including:
In some cases, disease can also cause holes in boxwood leaves. Diseases such as leaf spot and blight can cause the leaves to develop spots or lesions that eventually turn into holes. Box blight is especially damaging to boxwoods and can cause the leaves to turn brown and fall off the plant.
If you suspect that disease is the cause of holes in your boxwood leaves, it’s important to take action as soon as possible. Diseases can spread quickly and kill a plant if they’re not treated promptly.
To treat a plant with disease, you’ll need to remove any affected leaves and dispose of them properly. You may also need to treat the plant with a fungicide or other chemical treatment. Again, neem oil is great for this.
In some cases, animals such as rabbits, deer, and voles can cause holes in boxwood leaves. These animals typically eat the leaves of the plant, which can cause damage.
If you suspect that an animal is causing holes in your boxwood leaves, there are several things you can do to deter them, such as:
- Installing a fence around your garden
- Planting your boxwoods in raised beds
- Covering the plants with netting or chicken wire
- Spraying the plants with a repellent such as a deer deterrent or rabbit repellent
This will help keep the animals away from your plants and prevent them from causing further damage.
Finally, weather can also cause holes in boxwood leaves. Extreme cold or heat can cause the leaves to dry out and become brittle, which can lead to them breaking or developing holes.
Wind can also damage boxwood leaves, especially if it’s strong enough to snap the branches. This can cause the leaves to fall off and develop holes.
You can protect your tree by wrapping the trunk of the tree with a burlap or another type of fabric. This will help to protect the tree from the elements and prevent further damage.
Should I Prune Boxwood Leaves with Holes?
The only time I would prune boxwood leaves is if the tree has a disease or a serious pest infection. If the tree is otherwise healthy, I wouldn’t recommend pruning the leaves as this can cause more damage than good.
If you do need to prune your boxwood leaves, be sure to sterilize your tools before and after use. This is especially important if your tree has a disease, as you don’t want to spread the disease to other plants.
To sterilize your tools, you can either dip them in a bleach solution or use rubbing alcohol. Be sure to let the tools dry completely before using them on your plants.
Holes in boxwood leaves can be a nuisance, but by following these tips, you can get rid of the pests that are causing the problem and keep your plant healthy and happy. Thanks for reading! I hope this has been helpful. As always, feel free to reach out if you have any questions. 🙂
Tim is an avid gardener from the UK. He was the founder of PlantCarer.com from 2021 to Sep 2023. He sold PlantCarer.com to Aaron. He has since started his own business called Seed To Supper, which provides new gardeners all the materials you need in a box (pots, seeds, compost and instructions) to grow your own delicious and nutritious vegetables and herbs from start to finish – no garden required.