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Help my hedge!

Hi guys, 

I moved into a house approximately a year ago. There is an 8ft leylandii hedge which runs along the outside of the garden, on the outside of the hedge is a pavement. 

Recently, we've noticed one patch of the hedge becoming increasingly thin and brown, where you can nearly start to see into the garden from the outside. (see photo below). 

I fear that this part of the hedge won't be saved, however the rest of the hedge, eventhough brown in patches, is a good density and growing fine. 

I am looking at the possibility of running a fence alongside the hedge on the outside (pavement side) to avoid any bare patches meaning you can see into the garden. 

Does anyone have any advice on this? 

Out of the garden, on the pavement:


From the inside of the garden: 


Thank you!



  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,119

    There seems to be a problem with uploading photos at the moment ... I've alerted the Mods. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • matthewc2matthewc2 Posts: 2

    These may work.. 

  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700

    Your hedge will stay that way because it looks like too much of the areas have been infected a long time ago. Possibly a combination of poor management on cutting times, usualy too damp, or the soil it has been growing in is quite poorly drained, or attacks from the roots from the soil, but usually, many of these issues are due to the plant being under stressed in the first place, therefore susceptible to die-back/going brown.  

    If you like the colour and the plants are sturdy, they still make a good backdrop. You could put that fence around as suggested before. The other option is the drastic measure, get help to dig them up and start again.

    Last edited: 04 July 2017 15:42:01

  • NP2511NP2511 Posts: 2

    If you cut one side of the hedge all the way back to make way for the fence, will the whole hedge die? If we leave it how it currently is, will the whole hedge die eventually now that one side is dead?

  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700

    More photos are needed. It is totally possible it is alive, but the photo I saw suggests over 70% is brown. If this is not the case, then of course, the plant is still alive and the base areas need inspecting to see which branches are alive and which ones have died. Many of these hedges tended to be grown from many small shrubs and with careful checking, you may be able to lead it back to its original trunk to see. 

  • NP2511NP2511 Posts: 2

    If some of the branches are alive, does this mean that you can cut half the tree away and still keep the rest alive? Thanks!

  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700

    That can be done, but this can be unsightly and possibly weakens the plant. Each time you cut very harshly, the plant has to work hard to bring up new shoots. But, if you have this plan, then I don't see why not. 

  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053

    You will have a major problem of getting the fence posts in as the soil will be full of hedge roots. May be better to use the metal fence post spikes. 

    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
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