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Privet Hedge

Hi,  we have lived at our current house (Sheffield) since 2014 and a section of privet hedge was dying when we arrived. Only approximately 2-3 foot in width.  the neighbour commented that the previous occupant had poured bleach near/on the hedge in past years.  I assumed that this was the cause of the initial problem.  However, after the hedge had rejuvenated over recent years a small section within the same area has died.  I just wondered if anybody knew why this would be? Could it be that after 5-6 years the bleach is still affecting the hedge? Or could the potential bleach issue be a red herring, and the cause something else? A fungus perhaps? Any answers would be very much appreciated. 


  • Kitty 2Kitty 2 Posts: 5,150
    Many of the recent privet questions on the forum indicate that lots of them have suffered from last years drought conditions.
    I have some similar dark purple leaves on mine.
    Zooming in, I can see signs of growth in the tiny green buds... so it's not totally dead :).

    I think the bleach is long gone by now.

    I would give it a good prune, trim off any brittle, dead stems, and clear out any twiggy rubbish/fallen leaves around the base.

    Dovefromabove usually recommends a feed of 'Fish, Blood and Bone' in the spring to give hedges a pick me up.
    Oh, and a good drink of water.
  • Thanks Kitty.  The green shoots are from the privet either side of the dead section.  I can't see any green shoots on the plants affected.  And yes, I would imagine the bleach is long gone, but wondered if perhaps its alleged presence in the past has undermined the hedges resilience in the short to medium term - I would think not.  As spring conditions start to develop I'll keep my eye on it. But branches are brittle and I suspect it will need removing. But I could be wrong!
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 9,637
    If you aren't in too much of a hurry, you could cut the dead branches down to ground level (or until you reach live wood if there is any) and give them a while to see if they regrow.  If they don't it's a case of dig out and replace, or try to train growth from either side to fill the gap.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
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