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Leylandii spacing advice

Hello! I bought 70 90-100cm pot grown golden leylandii in Oct and planted it 40cm apart all in a row as per advice from the garden centre. I am now however thinking they are too close together. We would want them to grow to be 8ft-10ft tall. Should I dig out every second one and replant it 40cm out so they are now in a zigzag?

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  • FireFire LondonPosts: 13,993
    edited March 2020
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  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,601
    If they're already planted, I'd just leave them.
    Devon.
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,532
    Welcome to the Forum, Katie.  I'm sorry for Fire's huffy response, but I'm afraid you won't find many fans of Leylandii on this site.  70 pot-grown plants must have cost a fortune, it's a pity you didn't work out the spacing beforehand.  I fear the garden centre saw you coming and sold you as many as they could get away with.  My preferred spacing for Leylandii would be one every 50 miles.  They will suck up all the water and nutrients from the soil, and cast a deep shade over that side of your garden, making it difficult to grow other plants near them.

    Now you've bought them, of course, you'll want to use them; maybe they could be interspersed with other shrubs, such as holly, hazel or hawthorn, to add interest and wildlife value?
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 5,547
    edited March 2020
    Hmm. We inherited a golden leylandii hedge in a previous house. It was about the size you're aiming for and probably about 50cm spacing. It had to be trimmed roughly every 6 weeks (all year) to keep it at that size and the bottom 2 feet or so was completely brown. 

    And on the other hand, our next door neighbour here planted 3 golden leylandii about 10 years ago about 2m apart. They didn't trim them at all and the plants grew to about 30ft tall in 6 or 7 years, so they cut the tops off (about 10ft) to try to slow them down. They're now back to being about 30 fit high and at least 20ft wide. I would guess that the trunks are more than 40cm diameter now. So the effect of spacing them more is that they grow even more vigorously and are even harder to control.

    They are monsters. I wouldn't have them in my garden. The birds do like them though. They're completely full of pigeons.


    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • Thank you for your replies. We live in the country with no nearby neighbours but we wanted a quick growing wall of trees at the bottom of the garden where we would like to screen off a road. We are not planning on planting anything near it and it’s shadow cast will not be an issue for where we have planted it. In hindsight we should have done our own research rather than trusting and buying what the garden centre said. We are happy to keep them trim. 
    So, as they are 40cm apart do you think that would be a benefit as such as they may not grow as big? My concern is that they might not grow at all being so close?
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,601
    I'd relax about them, keep them trimmed to the height you need and you'll have a perfectly fine hedge. 
    Devon.
  • JoeXJoeX Posts: 1,729
    Hello! I bought 70 90-100cm pot grown golden leylandii in Oct and planted it 40cm apart all in a row as per advice from the garden centre. I am now however thinking they are too close together. We would want them to grow to be 8ft-10ft tall. Should I dig out every second one and replant it 40cm out so they are now in a zigzag?

    I would space them one per street 😉
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,601
    Given that @katie.macintosh has bought and planted them, perhaps some more positive comments might be appropriate?
    Devon.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,251
    I agree with Hosta, it's unkind to give such negative comments. The conifers will be fine grown at that spacing and pruned regularly as a hedge or left to grow taller as needed.
    They'll be great beside a road and will help keep the noise down.
  • hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 4,037
    I have 2 leylandii hedges in my garden. One of them specifically to act as a windbreak. Planted about 18 inches apart, kept trimmed once a year to around 7 foot. Every plant has a place somewhere and if leylandii are managed they make a good hedge plant. They are like dogs (or kids) - no bad dogs, just bad owners!
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
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