Hedging plants form attractive boundaries that can create screening to protect gardens, obscure unsightly garden features and a natural area for birds and wildlife.
If you have the right soil conditions it is possible to plant hedging straight into the ground. However, if you do not it is possible to form a hedge using containers placed next to each other.
Hedging is available in three main forms:
- Small Shrubs: Usually 3 litres in size and under 2 feet in height – starter plants with good shape and form.
- Specimen Shrubs: Usually 5 to 10 litres in size and up to 3 to 6 feet in height – often this makes a ready-made full height hedge
- Whips: Small bare-rooted plants. Available in Autumn and winter this is the cheapest way of creating a hedge but also takes the longest amount of time to thicken and reach full height.
If none of the usual hedging plants we have listed in this leaflet fulfil the needs you require it is worth noting that almost any shrub can, with careful pruning, be formed into a hedge.
THAT HEDGE YOU WANT
This is a guide showing plants that are well suited to specific conditions. Whilst it is always easier to grow plants in the conditions that they prefer with a little planning you can still have that special hedging plant that you really want.
- You can improve your soil conditions to suit specific plants
- You can create sheltered areas to overcome wind issues
- You can add shading and companion planting
When planting you should:
- Avoid times when the soil is waterlogged or frozen
- Dig a hole twice the size of the plants root ball
- Add a generous helping of Rose, Tree and Shrub compost and This will help the plant to establish more quickly.
- Firm the plant into the ground so that it will not move and rock in the wind
- Keep your plant well-watered in the summer
- Mulch the plant with blended manure yearly
If you do not have the right conditions you can grow your hedging plants in containers. Here you can control the conditions and environment far more easily. This saves you time and energy.
For example you can:
- Aid drainage by filling the bottom of the container with grit
- Use the best compost and rooting fertiliser so that your plant will start life happy
- Move the container to a more sheltered area if required
- Move the container in or out of the sunlight as the plant prefers
- Feed the plant regularly to keep it in good health
- Adjust the watering of the plant to suit its needs
Whilst the plant is young you can plant bedding plants around the edge of the container to give you increased colour in the garden!
A WORD OF CAUTION
Even though plants may have been thriving beautifully for a period the natural weather elements can take their toll on even the hardiest of inhabitants. High temperatures, strong sunlight, high winds drying during summer and bitterly cold during winter can all negatively affect the appearance of plants. This is often evidenced by:
- Wind: Blackened leaves from wind and salt burn which are a common sight after storms
- Sunlight: Brown leaves, particularly around the tips and margins. This is often followed by the leaves curling and shrivelling. In some cases whole leaves can become entirely crispy and there may be some minor die-back of branches.
WHAT SHOULD I DO?
If you do encounter damage then in the vast majority of cases the plant will grow through and overcome the issues of its own accord. However, in extreme situations you may need, or want, to prune out the damage to improve the plants visual appearance. After any damaging weather event pay particular attention to watering and feeding. This will strengthen the plant to the elements and improve its resilience to future weather conditions.
In addition there is also the issue of garden pests – see our Garden Pests Leaflet.
For further advice please call: Stone Cross Garden Centre – 01323 488188