Take a look at the two ‘Goshiki’ Osmanthus (a/k/a False Holly) on either side of my front door, where they get just a couple hours of late afternoon sun.

They’re slow-growing, so they need almost no pruning, ever, and they’re evergreen! And not plain dark green like most evergreen shrubs and trees but a variegated mix of white and light green. So lovely – I love this shrub!

And this year, in their 9th year out of the nursery and into this spot, they bloomed, and the scent covered my front yard. I was wow’ed all over again by this underused shrub.

But when I walked by these apartment buildings in my neighborhood it took a double-take for me to recognize them, sheared as they are into gumballs. 

No danger of these ever blooming, I bet. Sad, because they’d eventually grow together and be gorgeous!

Nearby, I spotted some even worse-looking evergreens in the same apartment complex – junipers treated with the same delicacy via power tools. Where can I sign up to teach their mow-blow-shear landscape crew to prune correctly? Free of charge! Not only would the result be healthier and prettier; correct hand-pruning is less maintenance in the long run than this butchery by power tools.

Speaking of pruning junipers, here are the old, overgrown ones that I rescued from pruning abuse two years ago. (I can’t help myself.) With all the dead parts pruned away, what’s left resembles bonsai and they’re lovely! Plus, they no longer collect garbage or harbor rodents.

You may recognize these as the junipers that so many commenters recommended killing.