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The history of topiary trees

best4hedging have a wonderful selection of topiary trees in a variety of different shapes and species. Whether you're looking for a traditional topiary tree or a more contemporary garden style with a splash of colour, we have it all. 

Topiary is defined as the training of live plants by clipping the foliage and branches of shrubs to develop and maintain a clearly defined shape. In the art world, topiary shapes are seen as a living sculpture. The name topiary is derived from the Latin name for an ornamental landscape gardener 'topiarius'. Topiary trees can be traced back to Roman times and were particularly popular in 16th Century gardens of the European elite. They were commonly used in parterres and terraces as well as cottage gardens.

Topiary trees are normally made using evergreen species with small leaves, dense foliage and a compact habit. These traits lend themselves well to topiary and produce neat forms. Topiary trees are either used to create geometric shapes like balls, cones and cubes or representational forms such as animals, people or man-made objects.

There are many landscape and garden uses for topiary trees. Topiary is popularly used in contemporary gardens and for patio design ideas. Common uses include: punctuating hedges with a topiary standard or lollipop; placing one or two topiary plants either side of a doorway; lining borders with small balls or using as a patio feature.

Head over to our blog for more interesting articles on gardening.