Topiary can take a long time to grow into form. However, if you’re eager, you will love this ‘instant’ approach. Simply buy a plant and sculpt it all in one day! It works particularly well for bird shapes.
Gather your supplies
• Small or medium buxus
• Small pot
• Potting mix
• 2mm-dia copper wire
• Sharp scissors
Step 1 Remove plant from pot and tap to remove soil from root ball. Part buxus in middle to find branches where longer shoots will grow – these will form bird’s head and neck.
Step 2 To form head and neck, hook wire onto 1 branch at the central stem to anchor it, then wrap wire around designated branches.
Step 3 Cut back thickest branches all over buxus, leaving wispier ones to cover cut stubs – this creates a feathery look. Trim and shape buxus into bird’s breast and tail. If you want to add more definition to the tail, wrap branches with copper wire.
Step 4 Fill 1/3 of pot with potting mix and position topiary in pot. Set root ball a little above rim of pot – to create the best display for your work of art – and backfill.
Step 5 Prune in spring or early summer, clipping to emphasise shape.
Click here for more information on how to grow and look after topiary.