A Hedging Question

Hi
We want to plant a hedge that will be 10ft high and 50ft long, all we can find are horror stories about leylandii!
Can anyone recommend an alternative? we need instant height!
Thanks
--
argonex


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I have these magic beans... fee, fi, fo, fum... I smell the blood of an Englishman.
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argonex wrote:

So it seems you want hedging shrubs/trees that will grow very quickly and thickly and stop at 10ft and will not require constant maintenance after that.
Hedging plants have different rates of growth and probable ultimate sizes. Their growth slows down as they get towards their ultimate size. So initial growth rates being equal if choose one that will max out at 10ft it will not get that high as quickly as one that will max out at 20ft. And of course the max height cannot be known precisely because your local conditions may mean it reaches more or less than the usual height left to its own devices. You can see this in some hedges where one end always grows taller than the other due to better soil, more water or whatever.
The horror stories are because (like you) people want something instantly so they choose leylandii because it grows fast. The trouble is that when it reaches the required height it doesn't magically stop, in good conditions its ultimate height is much more than 10ft. You are then in for a lifetime of frequent pruning to keep it under control. The more constrained your space is and the more sensitive your neighbours are and the more neatness you require the more this will become a problem.
OTOH if you want something that is easier to manage it will not get to the height you want as quickly and if it nearing its maximum it may look uneven as some plants do better than others and perhaps the tops don't bush out enough to fill in all the space.
TANSTAAFL
David
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Agreed, but...
Any 10 foot hedge requires a lot of maintenance. Boxwood reaches about 10 feet but if you don't prune it to shape it thins at the bottom and bulges at the top.
You need a 10ft ladder and a hedge trimmer with a long blade.
Better to move if the neighbors are that bad.
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On Fri, 03 Sep 2010 22:37:57 -0400, snipped-for-privacy@verizon.net wrote:

Any height hedge requires constant maintenence, whether two feet high or twenty feet high. The only hedge I know of that requires no trimming and will still look good is Canadian hemlock... of course it can benefit from shearing if one likes that more dense/formal habit but will do fine left to its own devices... it will grow to about 20+ feet but can be lopped off to any height... I'd leave them to grow naturally.

Anytime one needs a hedge to block out neighbors they'd do much better to erect a strong wall... moving isn't always an option or a good solution, the devil you get can be far worse. My experience is that people who find they need to build something to block out the neighbor are more likely the ones who are the problem.
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Hmmm... A curious thought. Can one apply a chemical that can slow the growth of a fast growing hedge and have the hedge still look good? Just an evil thought.
--
Enjoy Life... Dan L

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In article < snipped-for-privacy@news.eternal-se ptember.org>,

Maybr you could rinse the dirt off of its roots, and trim them. (One very large bonsai)
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Totally agree with everything said! In addition one concept that even the mosts fastidious retiree fails to grasp is that the actual branches of conifers thicken and move outwards, so that even if you trim a regular hedge line five times a year it will still advance over your neighbour boundary.
You could try Cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus), which in my book is worse than Leylandii, or the slower Portugese laurel (Prunus lusitanica). Both are ultimately monsters that will grow to 18m or so if left unchecked for years. Bay is good (Laurus nobilis), but again growth becomes exponential the more it puts its roots out with time so maintenance is soon a headache.
Deciduously speaking the native Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus) is good on clay and a reasonably fast grower if planted as a whip and its been around in the UK longer than Beech, which technically is a euro import.
For something completely different that fits your criteria for fixed ultimate height and fast growth, try bamboo. Japanese use bamboo as a trimmed hedger all the time. But do NOT use the TV gardening show makeover Phyllostachys nigra or P. aurea - these will not be very leafy at the bottom - (Only culms) and the leafs will all be uptop and they will run to some extent.
Whilst a Bambusa multiplex might not grow in the UK, which is what the Japs would use, the fargesia species are clump forming and equally good in my opinon. Fargesia rufa and F. murielae 'Jumbo' with its more vertical habit are the best for hedges 2-3m. Alternatively try Chimonobambusa marmorea for a 2m hedge. Yushania anceps also is a very dense bamboo and has glossy healthy looking leaves. You could use taller species if you double plant and have the width. I guarantee you will not be able to see through a 5 year old Fargesia rufa or murielae at 1.8m height!
Of course the trouble with bamboos is they are monocarpic so when a species flowers it dies (As we've seen with Fargesia nitida), plant a mix of species and I think new clones of F. nitida are now available too, so they should last another hundred years or so. Its a bit of a change for the traditional english gardening vocabulary but with mixed species you can get some interesting textural and colour variations.
Personally I would still choose Hornbeam as that is my favorite though!
--
Sambo


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Hmmm... Applying indoor plant methods to outdoors shrubs? That's a lot of digging. Yep, just get the backhoe out for the John Deer :) I was thinking along the lines that many states use, they often spray a chemical on the berms along the state highways to slow the growth of grass to reduce mowing.
--
Enjoy Life... Dan L

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Why not a good fence? In my neck of the woods they can be as high as 10'. Maintenance is low and then you have all that length to add flowers, vines, etc to make it look like a hedge.
Donna in WA
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Bob F wrote:

Running bamboo growing in suitable conditions is rampant and rampaging, the shoots pop up all over the place including your neighbours' yard and if it gets into the sewer say goodnight. If it gets going you will beg to prune a giant hedge weekly instead. Clumping bamboo might be worth considering but don't rush.
David
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On 9/5/2010 6:37 PM, David Hare-Scott wrote:

I would NOT risk running bamboo, not even with a barrier 36" deep or 4" above ground, though it's beautiful. I'd use a barrier even with clumping bamboo, just to be safe.
Susan
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wrote:

I've one plant of black bamboo near my pond 30 years old some 40 foot tall. Also have a yellow on the other side of my yard 20 years old. I 'd guess the black is about 30 sq. foot area running about. I cut it for stakes and have tried to eat the real young shoots but it did not prove worthwhile. I love it except when heavy winter snow pulls it down. I prune in little actions when inspired. Now there was also a yellow 15 foot I planted that ran about and the esthetics did not pass muster. What to do? I got my pick ax out and pried it up. The next year I did the same only less bamboo. Third year I pulled a few stranglers and it was gone. I've had a harder time with ajuga , Swedish ivy vine, hops and trumpet vine.
--
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On Mon, 6 Sep 2010 08:37:40 +1000, "David Hare-Scott"

Planting bamboo is not being smart, if it invades your neighbor's property you will be liable for the cost of remediation.
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