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Hedge Recovery

Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,142
We are in the process of moving house out to the sticks. The picture below (from Google street view) shows the front hedge at some point in the past

The picture below shows it’s current state after what appears to be an over zealous haircut. 

Do you think the hedge can recover to its former glories and, if so, how long to get back to the prior state? 


  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 8,131
    The laurels should grow back with a bit of TLC (you can see new growth near the bases), but I think I would ditch the conifer arch.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,142
    Thanks @JennyJ. I agree entirely regarding the conifer arch although I do like the concept. I’m thinking of a pergola with something growing up it, Trachelospermum maybe? 

    Any other suggestions of design or plant(s) welcome! 
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,688
    For the arch idea, I think a Pyracantha shrub clipped and trained over will look nice and stay evergreen which will blend naturally with the hedge.
  • Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,142
    Thanks @Borderline. I have to say a Pyracantha would be an interesting choice considering the thorns on them. We had one at our current property and it was a nightmare being quite close to a pathway within the garden. I can see why they are recommended as detergents to intruders! 
  • Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,142
    Just bumping this to see if anyone has any further plant suggestions for the arbor which will replace the conifers. Would need to be evergreen. The arbor will be either oak or douglas fir to match the oak-frame garage. Something along these lines

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,740
    A neighbour up the rise has a pyracantha archway over his back garden gate ... he keeps it well clipped so the 'surface leafage' is always young growth with no thorns ... at the moment it's absolutely covered with berries and looks a real picture. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 8,131
    It would be a shame to cover a nice wooden arbour with an evergreen. It's asking for a couple of clematis or a climbing rose. For shrubby/woody evergreens I think a simpler  structure of some sort would do the trick until you have a framework of branches trained.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 50,246
    I'm inclined to agree with @JennyJ. Some nice climbers would show off the arbour, but not completely dominate it. 
    An 'archway' with evergreens is easy enough to do without using a posh structure. You could do it with Beech or Hornbeam, just shaped as needed, in the same way you would if they were hedging. They take that very well. Yew as well, or even some of the other sturdy shrubs which don't mind pruning and footering with. Eleagnus etc. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,142
    Thanks @JennyJ and @Fairygirl. As you might see from the picture our new place is raised up somewhat from the road level, albeit a very quite country road other than farm cottages and vehicular parking on the other verge. Removing the current pair of conifers will rather expose the view, both into ours and from ours. The idea of the arbour arch was to somewhat 'take the edge' off that large opening that we will end up creating.

    I think we'll need to see what the result of the removal is before deciding completely on the plan. It may be that a combination of arbour, pyracantha and climber (Trachelospermum) etc might be the way to go. The arbour would give an element of immediate 'cover' while waiting the few years for the other planting to take over.

    I appreciate the thoughts and suggestions!
  • FireFire Posts: 17,116
    Pyracantha might be good for the hedge behind, but keeping the arch clear will not be a low maintenance job. I've been investigating solanum album as a climber - white flowers, (semi) evergreen - it could be a good option.
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