Let's discuss hedgerows and how to choose the perfect hedge for your garden
You may be wondering why I am writing a blog about hedges, surely you can just put in anything and there you go.
Hedgerows for some people are now becoming an integrated part of the garden.. let me explain.
Hedges for instant colour
If you are looking to add an instant block of colour to your garden take a look at these examples below:
Photinia x fraseri (Red Robin)
If you’re looking for year-round interest in your garden, the Red Robin is the hedging plant for you.
Under the right conditions it produces clusters of delicate white flowers
Year round vibrant red shiny leaves.
The Red Robin isn’t a particularly dense shrub, so it’s not recommended where extra privacy or security is needed.
This plant will grow quite quickly but can easily be maintained up to a height of 4m.
Fagus Sylvatica (Copper or Purple Beech)
Known for it’s purple and green hues in the spring and summer and copper – burgundy colours in the colder months.
Grows into a thick, dense hedge does well in both full sun and partial shade, these types of hedges are relatively low maintenance and only need pruning once or twice a year, although they do grow quickly at a rate of 40-60cm per year.
Choisya ternata ‘Sundance’ (Golden Mexican Orange Blossom Hedge)
A vibrant evergreen shrub with beautiful yellow foliage.
Fast growing a rate of 30-50cm a year and reaching a max height of approximately 1-2 metres this little shrub is perfect for a splash of colour, however if you are looking for privacy hedging, this is not once for you.
It requires little in the way of pruning, although stripping out older dead wood and weak shoots around June will help promote strong new growth
Hedges to help wildlife
Prunus padus (Bird Cherry)
A native hedge plant, which is most commonly grown as a tree but can be used in a mixed native hedgerow.
In late spring, white, almond-scented flowers attract bees who are drawn to them for an early supply of food and pollen.
Once flowered, berries develop which entice birds and small mammals. The foliage also provides food for a range of insects, particularly the caterpillars of many species of moth.
It an average growth rate of around 20-40cm each year and can be easily maintained up to 1-4m.
Beautiful green leaves with white undersides, white flowers flushed with pink in May and June and a flourish of orange-red, bird-friendly berries in autumn.
Trim after the berries have fallen.
Some leaves will drop in autumn.
Suitable for coastal areas and performs well in exposed sites.
RHS has recognised that Cotoneaster franchetii has shown to be effective at reducing pollution in heavily trafficked areas, soaking up 20% more toxins than other hedging varieties.
Elaeagnus x ebbingei (Oleaster)
Fast growing at approximately 30-50cm per annum and needs to be clipped to shape in the autumn.
Produces subtly fragrant white flowers in autumn and small orange fruits in spring.
The leaves are dark green with silver flourishes.
The denseness of the hedgerow is attractive to nesting animals and those looking for homes through the cold winter months.
Rosa Canina (Dog Rose)
Although Dog Rose is commonly grown as an informal garden shrub but can be used as part of a mixed native hedge row, it also acts as a great deterrant to intruders due to it’s thorns.
This shrub can also act as a great shelter for wildlife, providing vitamin rich fruits.
It’s a fast-growing shrub, reaching up to 40-60cm per year, and grows well in most well drained soils.
Malus sylvestris (Crab Apple)
Crab Apple hedging is well known for it’s wealth of fruit and flowers and are very popular with the bees and can support around 90 individual species of birds and insects.
Edible sour tasting apples perfect for making a delicious dessert.
Tolerant of most soil types, Crap Apple hedging plants grow best in sunny or partially shaded conditions.
Ceanothus (California Lilac)
A none native hedging originally from North America a Ceanothus hedge will easily add colour to any garden, even when it is not in bloom the deep green foliage adds great year round full coverage.
It is best planted in a fertile, well-drained soil, can be expected to grow between 20 – 40cm per year.
It is known for spreading so needs to be placed in an area which will allow it to grow, although care needs to be taken to ensure it is protected against strong, frosty winds which can easily damage this plant.