Whether you are planting the boxus or the green mountain variety, boxwoods need regular trimming to appear neat. There are a few tricks to neatly trim your boxwoods into the desired shape without ruining them and your other surrounding plants. If you are laboring to slice through the boxwood branches, you are almost certainly too deep into the wood of the shrub. Trimming is all about keeping up with the plant's growth. For boxwoods to appear like hedges and not just bushes, you need to limit their growth so they become thicker while making sure you do not stunt their growth or kill them.
With hand trimmers, you can be more comfortable that you will not slice into the wood too much, but electric and gas powered trimmers it's easy to accidentally take too much off. If you, at any point, find that you are cutting so deep you can see the inner workings of the woody stems, you need to stop at once.
Another sign you have gone too far is brown and dead leaves. Typically, the inside layers of leaves will die off from lack of light. If you are cutting so deep that you find the dead leaves, you have broken through green layer and set yourself back a bit on trimming. If this happens, simply take your trusty shears and reach deep into the plant and cut off the dead branch at the wood. In this case, a hole in the shrub is better than an ugly dead patch.
The main complaint people have about their hedges is the dead look the bushes can get if the trimmings aren't properly cleaned up. When you have finished cutting, make sure you remove the dead parts you have cut off. This also serves to reveal any long pieces that may pop up later and ruin your perfect trim lines. Once you have removed the trimmings from the top of the plant you will need to clean up the trimmings that have fallen to the ground around the plant.
If you follow these few tips and throw in a bit of your own experience and love for your own boxwoods, you will be a professional trimmer in no time!