Hedging offers a cost effective option for your garden and mature hedging gives you the instant privacy and screening and is much more cost effective than a brick wall and form an attractive boundary more quickly than many people imagine.
Mature Hedging can create a strong framework for the garden, so that it looks good in midwinter and provides an attractive background to carry the colours of your spring and summer garden. As well as providing structure to the garden, they can be perfect for wildlife, and particularly nesting birds.
You could opt for an evergreen hedge if you are looking for cover & privacy all year round. With an evergreen hedge around your garden, even in the winter, when most trees, shrubs and bushes have lost their leaves, you prevent people seeing into your home or blocking the view or new house or extension that looks into your garden. All you need to do is decide which variety to go for and with so many options it is sometimes hard to know. Do you prefer the fresh, lighter greenery of thuja or jasmine? Or do you like the deep green of holly or yew?The functionality and denseness of laurel or the splash of colour of Photinia Red Robin, the options of mature and instant hedges are numerous. One thing to consider when looking at the cost of your mature hedge is that normally a deciduous hedge costs less than the evergreen options for a number of reasons but that you will not have the cover year round that an evergreen hedge gives you, for some that is fine as you may not be in the garden and require privacy at that time. If you can reduce some of your cover then consider a Beech or Hornbeam hedge that holds on to some of its copper Autumn/Winter leaves to give a moderate cover (unless there are very high winds).
Planting a mature, instant hedge has the following benefits:
We have taken the time to grow the hedges, so you don’t have to!
Shelter: reducing wind strength better than a solid barrier
Reduces noise levels from roads or neighbours.
Privacy & Screening
Security: a prickly hedge is a great intruder deterrent, try Pyracantha, Holly or Berberis.
Beauty and interest from seasonal changes, particularly deciduous hedging
Background texture and colour complement other plants. Also try scented hedging like the Evergreen Jasmine (pictured above)
Wildlife: food and shelter for a wide variety of native insects, birds and mammals, try Holly, Cotoneaster or Blackthorn.
Weather-resistance: much better than man made fences or brick walls
Economy long term compared with fencing and brick work
Long-lived: hedges can last hundreds of years
Can be planted to shape, such as a curve
With the changes in our Irish weather over the last few years it is imperative that you look at the maintenance of your hedge. The amount of water available to your hedge roots depends on the water retention capacity of the soil (e.g. sandy, or clay soil) and is not an exact science but it is important that you observe the hedge foliage for signs of drought so that your watering regime can be adjusted as necessary; external signs of drought are that the foliage wilts and sometimes rolls or turns.
It is important to note it is just as easy to over water your hedge and if you notice leaves turning yellow or experience unseasonal leaf drop, then it is likely to be over watered; watered in which case immediate action should be taken to cut back on watering. Dig a small hole beside the hedge rootstrip which will indicate the amount of water getting to the roots; if it’s obviously wet, then the hedge is over-watered. If its too dry then increase the water and if you have any doubt, just pop me an email and I will advise accordingly, rather than you lose the hedge that could easily be rectified either way, don’t leave it too long as then you can’t revert the damage.
Watering in the winter is not usually required unless the hedge is evergreen and there have been long periods with little or no rainfall. If you use an irrigation timer, it is a good idea to store it indoors over the winter and re-connect to the system in early spring.
At this time of year feeding your hedge is not necessary, save the feeding until the Spring for your hedge to get the best benefits from the feed and use again, depending on the fertiliser used every two to three months, this will not only get the hedge to gain growth but will increase the health of the hedge thus being able to fight any diseases or have greater resilience to adverse weather conditions.
The best time of the year to prune a hedge depends on the type of plant. If the plant buds in the early spring, it can be trimmed late summer. If it blooms in the late spring, then later in the autumn or winter will be better. For non-flowering hedges, pruning can take place in the autumn or winter as well.