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removing leylandii hedge

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We`are removing a 70' hedge shortly which we will replace with shrubs. The soil is mostly clay and behind the existing hedge is a 6' high fence. the border is north facing. We want to plant a shrub border principally for security as there is a road on the other side. can anyone recommend how to plan the planting? Our ideal shrubs will be fast growing. mix of leaf colour, mostly evergreen and flowering, min full height 6-8 feet. WIll there be any other problems once hedge has been removed that we should consider




The trouble with 'fast-growing' and your height criterion is that any shrubs you grow don't necessarily stop at that height!!

Anyway, bearing that in mind, Escallonia would be a good start, you can get different coloured flowers. Laurel sounds boring, but there's a pretty variegated one - and you do get white flowers, too!

Then there's Choisya ternata, also with its white flowers - that blooms twice a year. Dark green aromatic leaves.

I'd also mention Holly - not fast growing, but if you got one of the Ilex x lawsoniana group, they are without prickles and have beautiful gold and green leaves.

Some Eleagnus is also variegated, and would join in the theme!

You will have to bear in mind that the dreaded trees will have leached all the nutrients out of the soil, so you'll not only have to get the roots out, but feed the soil plenty of compost and well-rotted manure before you plant anything.

I hope all this helps. You have a big job to do! Good luck with it!

21 Jun, 2009


You might also consider Photinia fraserii Red Robin or similar, Pyracantha varieties (prickly, good for security) Berberis darwinii (bit prickly)

21 Jun, 2009


Griselinia Littoralis is one of my favourites. It has lovely apple green leaves which are evergreen and there is also a a variegated variety called 'Limelight' which is especially cheery on a miserable winters day. Said not to be 100% hardy but I have had 2 of each for several years and never had a problem, not even last winter! The variegated one is slower growing though.

22 Jun, 2009


I am so glad you are removing this dreadful hedge (I think leylandii should be outlawed as it causes so many disputes). Be careful of your skin when you do chop it down as it can cause skin irritation. If you are worried about security, why not plant a row of berberis - thunbergii f. autropurpurea which has lovely foliage,creamy yellow flowers and berries which the birds love. It is also full of prickles.

22 Jun, 2009


I too like B. thunbergii, but it is deciduous - B. darwinii is not, but doesn't have those lovely dark reddish purple leaves.

22 Jun, 2009

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