Boxwood can be easily overlooked, we are so used to it as common edge or topiary plant, that we maybe ignore it for a botanical study, but it’s quite interesting and beautiful, especially the fruits.
The box has many similarities with to the spurges (they were part of Euphorbia’s family at some point)and the fruits and seeds are closed to the Hammamelis species. This winter I want to sketch the Hamamelis fruit also and you will see the resemblance.
In order to understand the structure of the fruit we have to look at the flower from which this fruit grows. It is actually an inflorescence: small male flowers with 4 stamens are surrounding the female flower which has 3 fused ovaries surmounted by three bilobed styles.
In our reference photo we can see an unopened fruit (which is the inflated ovary of fertilised female flower) and two open capsules. In each one of those little ochre-yellow chambers, there is a seed. The male flowers are reduced to a structure at the base of the fruit.
In today’s video I will show you how I sketch with pencil, ink liner and watercolour the fruits of Buxus sempervirens:
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