Perfect Plants for Hedging and Edging!
A hedge can make a fantastic difference to your garden and no matter what you want to achieve there’s a plant to do it for you. The best place to start is your local garden centre like the one here at Norwood. Not only do they have great ideas they’ve got examples of what plants work very well in South Australia.
Whether you want to screen, edge, add texture, colour or perfume to your patch of ground a living hedge is the answer. They also offer delineation, dimension, interest and structure. Be inspired by ideas like this appealing area where instantly, Japanese box, prostrate Rosemary and some colour work together instantly to create a formal feature which will continue to improve as years go by.
I know, I can hear you all saying “What plants? Where do I start?” Well I’ve picked four I reckon you’ll have great success with. First of all the Diosma which has proven itself in SA during the drought and hot weather. Beaut little plant let it go, prune it and let it come into flower, pale pink to dark pink or white.
Plumbago is another toughie. This is Royal Cape the dark blue. Its a great plant to ramble over fences or ugly parts of your garden. You can also clip it at any time of the year, stop and it comes into flower. Murraya is another hardy plant perfect for hedging, with a sensational perfume, shape it tall, a must for South Australian gardens. And finally I’ve kept the best for last. Now it’s had a bit of bad press but it’s one of the toughest plants and it’s an absolute winner for our gardens – The Oleander. Pop into your garden centre and have a look at the range of Oleanders and give them another chance. Lauristinus or Viburnium tinus is a hardy plant just perfect for creating a hedge in either a sunny or partly shaded area. They are just the plant for a large formal hedge or even a fence line if you live in a rural area, the other good news is they are long-living - 60 years plus. If left unpruned they will develop masses of delightful lightly scented white flowers. In late Winter / early Spring give them a prune when they’re finished flowering. A general rule is to plant your hedge plants 1 to 2 bricks apart to keep their root systems separate.Within 18 months with regular care your Lauristinus will grow from this… to THIS… Now that’s what I call a plant for all seasons! Euonymus japonicus microphyllus or Tom Thumb is a handsome small plant. It’s perfect for a low compact hedge and ideal for an edging such as this. The Bush Christmas Lily Pilly stands its ground as well in the hedging stakes, it adds height, is quick growing and resists disease. Again, with a regular haircut and feed it will reward you well. It’s a good idea also to drive around your local area and see what’s working well for others. Popular choices are pittosporum and the appealing Duranta, a hardy plant that has breezed thru the drought times and a must for that quick cover screen or hedge however it could require pruning 3 or 4 times a year. You know so many times when people buy a beautiful house and garden like this one behind me the first thing they do is pull out plants like this Cotoneaster. But really why not work with it – it’s just about bulletproof. Give it a haircut and up it comes! Most likely it will be here for another hundred years!
Maintenance is a necessity when it comes to hedges but thanks to modern technology, the task of keeping them tidy has never been easier!
In SA this is the Granddaddy of all hedges. There’s around a kilometre of hedge face to trim here at Carrick Hill and, until it was savagely cut back in the 1980s, this hedge was even higher than it is today. For decades this venerable green mass was trimmed with trusty hedge shears. It was a labour of passion and pride! Straight edges, tapered sides and clipped with love twice a year!
We tend to forget that most hedges are made up of individual plants so they need care and attention in their early stages. They’re like lawns too, the more you care for them and nurture them the least amount of problems you’re going to have down the track.