Finding the perfect hedge

For anyone that has been thinking about planting a hedge in their garden now is the perfect time to get going on it. Autumn is really the best time to think about planting a hedge because they tend to establish so much better than if planted during the summer.

Finding the right hedge for your garden

One of the most important things with hedges is to find the right one for you and to make sure it is planted at the right spacing to give you a healthy, easy to maintain hedge. Thankfully there are so many different types to choose from that you have lots of options to pick from to find the right one for you.

Beech Hedge
Beech Hedge

Different Verities of hedges 

One of my favourite hedge to recommend to people has to be a good beech hedge. I feel beech makes a fantastic hedge that looks extremely classy and adds interest to a garden through a few different seasons.

When in leaf the hedge makes a great backdrop to a garden and then in autumn as the leaves turn to shades of yellow and orange it takes on a different personality in the garden.

Beech hedges are very popular
Beech hedges are very popular

You can also get copper beech but I find a hedge planted entirely in copper beech does not work well as it can look like a very dark block.

I advise people to combine ordinary green beech with copper beech together in one hedge. It works extremely well as the colours contrast each other beautifully and offer a great variegated pattern.

Portuguese Laurel is as popular as ever with gardeners thanks to its dense foliage and upright growth habit. It can be slightly more expensive than other laurel hedges but is hands down one of the most popular because it makes such a great hedge.

Portuguese Laurel (Prunus lusitanica)-Image Source RHS
Portuguese Laurel (Prunus lusitanica). Image Source RHS.

Of course hedges do not just have to be for wind defense or privacy, they can also be used as a decorative feature in your garden. In my own garden I have made a great looking hedge from Rosa Rugosa which needs no maintenance at all really and looks brilliant during the year.

Rosa rugosa offers flowers and brilliant rosehips
Rosa rugosa offers flowers and brilliant rosehips

And now around this time of the year I have the added delight of rosehips which are attracting mountains of birds to the garden.

Hebes also make a great low hedge in a garden if you are just looking to divide up different sections of the garden. Camellia hedges can look fantastic in a garden too as they are so decorative.

They are very expensive though so they are really only feasible for people who are looking for only a very short hedge in a garden. You won’t find too many people using it as a boundary hedge around their entire garden anyway!

Camellia make a beautiful hedge
Camellia make a beautiful hedge

Maintaining your hedge

When it comes to maintaining hedges it is important to keep them well watered when they are first planted and especially during warm, dry weather in summer. When it comes to trimming them I much prefer to use secateurs rather than hedge clippers on the sides of my hedges.

I feel with hedge clippers you end up cutting leaves in half which eventually turn brown and fall off and it can look unsightly for a number of weeks. With secateurs, while it may take longer, it gives you a better finish and more control over the shape.  

We stock a wide variety of hedging in CountryLife for both smaller and bulk orders and specialty requirements. Talk to any of our horticulturists in store for more information.