Hedging can add many things to a property or garden, from an air of sophistication, to providing you with more privacy, and provided you choose the right hedging plants for the location, you could have yourself a wonderfully attractive and functional hedge. But how do you choose the right hedging plants? Let’s take a closer look:
What type of hedge should you opt for?
There are several different types of hedge you can choose, and the most popular ones are listed below:
- Formal hedging
Offering cleanly cut edges and defined shapes, formal hedging requires plants that are able to withstand the regular pruning required to keep them in shape at all times.
The plants you choose for a formal hedge should be grown close together so that they form a smooth wall with no gaps.
- Informal hedging
Some homeowners want to adopt a more natural style of garden and home, and therefore want a hedge to match that. Informal hedges tend to have a less regulated, more organic shape, and don’t require the constant trimming and pruning of a more formal hedge. This means that you can look for hedging plants for sale that have larger leaves, as they won’t need to be tightly clipped.
- Deciduous hedging
These hedges do lose their leaves when autumn and winter come around, but they tend to have a more natural appeal than evergreen hedges, and as an additional bonus, they often bear fruit in the form of berries, or flowers. Obviously, because deciduous hedges lose their leaves at certain times of the year, if you’re looking for continual privacy, this might not be the right choice for you. That said, what they may lack in privacy, they more than make up for in aesthetics, when their leaves change colours with the seasons.
- Evergreen hedging
Because this type of hedge stays green all year round, they make a great choice in terms of privacy, and their small leaves coupled with denser growth, mean that they can easily be trimmed to create either an informal, or a formal hedge. Evergreen hedging is also great for encouraging wildlife to your garden.
Factors to consider when selecting a hedge type
To get the right hedge to meet your needs, carefully consider the following questions:
What is the purpose of the hedge?
Do you want a hedge to look pretty, give you privacy or to help provide cover for birds and other wildlife?
What shape should the hedge be?
Hedging plants that are wider at the bottom than they are at the top, will be easier to prune and form quickly into a hedge.
What size do you want the hedge to be?
Larger plants are ideal for creating a hedge that gives you privacy, while for a hedge running alongside a path, you may want to choose a lower hedge whose plants have denser leaves.
Should your hedge be low maintenance?
A hedge that’s resistant to disease and requires minimal upkeep is typically a better choice, although if you’re looking for a highly stylized hedge, you may need to choose formal hedging plants. If your hedge requires a lot of watering and pruning, will you have the time to do it?
What are the soil conditions?
In general, hedging plants prefer soil that is well drained, but some varieties are able to tolerate wetter soil. If you’re not sure what type of soil you’ve got, you can always check with a professional landscaper. Think also about whether your hedge will need sunlight, shade or a bit of both.
The right hedging can transform a home, so take the time to choose your hedging plants wisely, and if in doubt, always consult with a professional.