Hedges have lots of advantages. They tend to be attractive, much more so than the average functional fence. They’re also usually less expensive than fences, which is great if you’re working with a budget.
Planting hedges is also a great way to attract birds into your garden. As more and more green areas are replaced with buildings, birds are struggling for a habitat. So why not use hedges to welcome birds into your garden this Draw a Bird Day?
Plants to use
You can use almost any type of shrub to make a hedge. However, needless to say, some plants work better than others. Some ideal hedge plants include:
Laurel is an evergreen plant with large, light green, glossy leaves. It’s a resilient plant that can grow in sun or shade and dry or wet conditions, as long as the ground isn’t significantly waterlogged. Laurel bushes are eye-catching and can grow quite large, so are great if you want to make a feature out of your hedge.
Yew is another attractive shrub that works well as a hedge. It’s darker and a little more subtle than laurel, so is ideal if you want your hedge to blend in. Yew doesn’t like wet soils and is fairly slow to establish though, so isn’t great if you want a quick result.
Colours to go for
Laurel and yew hedges are green but there are more colourful options available. You can use variegated plants, like silver holly or golden privet, if you want multi-coloured leaves. Or if you fancy a flowering hedge, you could use hawthorn or potentilla.
When deciding what to use, bear in mind what you have in the rest of your garden. If you have lots of flowers, it might be best to choose a fairly neutral plain green hedge. But if you have relatively few colours in your garden, a flowering or variegated hedge could be a great feature.
Where to buy them
Once you’ve chosen your hedge plant, head down to your local garden centre or nursery or find one online. If you’re not sure how many plants to get, let them know the area you want the hedge to cover and they should be able to give you some advice. If you want to order a fairly large quantity of plants, let the garden centre know in advance and you might be able to negotiate a discount.
How to keep your security
Some people choose fences over hedges because they don’t want to compromise on security. A fully-grown hedge can be as secure as any fence but hedges that are just establishing can leave property boundaries exposed.
If you want a hedge but are worried about security, there’s a way round it. Put up a temporary wire fence when you plant your hedge. This will keep your boundaries secure while the hedge is still growing and then disappear once it’s grown round and through it.
So not only are hedges attractive, economical and bird-friendly, they’re also easy to grow. Try improving your garden for you and the birds this Draw a Bird Day.