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Brown Patch in standard privit hedge

Can anyone kindly advise about this?


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,093
    Could it be foxes or dogs having a regular wee on it as they are passing?
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • *Thanks* for your help Pete. Good suggestion but the roots are our side of the wall (front garden) so I don't think it could be an acrobatic dog or fox. I wondered if there was a common pest/fungi that can cause this?
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,674
    It happens sometimes with privet for no apparent reason, especially with older bushes. I've got two large patches of it in my hedge and am trying to entice both sides to grow over it. It's a slow business.
  • *Thanks* for your helpful reply Lizzie. Yes - its quite weird. So would you suggest pruning/cutting/trimming that patch out - when would be a good time to do it?
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,674
    It's dead and won't regenerate so any time will do. I'm just pruning mine back for an inch or two and then tying in the green strands either side of the dead patch in the hope they will eventually meet in the middle. In the spring, I would water the hedge (or that particular area and feed it.

    There were lots of posts about dead privet patches last year, if you search on the forum you should be able to read them. One of the causes was said to be honey fungus which can affect privet as well as other plants and I think this might be the cause in my hedge as other plants have also died mysteriously. Drought also plays a part.
  • *Thanks* Lizzie - That's very helpful. Because it is a relatively small area at the moment I wondered if there is anything I can do to stop it spreading. There is an ivy growing on the neighbours side too... I'll look up the posts on dead privets. Thanks again.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,198
    Cats spraying only affects the sprayed area - not roots. That's probably far more likely than dogs, although foxes are certainly another possibility, as @Pete.8  says. A wall that height wouldn't stop them marking territory.
    The effect would be the same either way, with just a section dying back in that way. 

    Honey fungus is the other option. It might be worth checking if it's that as Privet is very prone to it. 

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 9,674
    edited December 2021
    I'm actively pulling through the ivy and tying it to the dead bits - at least it's green and helps to hide the dead bits. I don't mind this as my worst patch ( 4ft x 5ft) is behind the garage, we don't usually see it although it's noticeable from the road side.

    It may well be that in your case the ivy next door is sucking all the moisture out of the ground near the roots of that patch of privet, so extra watering might be the key.
     Good luck!
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,093
    Yes - I was thinking of wee on the leaves.
    The lower part of the bush looks ok as does the upper bit - just the bit by the path that has been damaged.
    I see a lot of it on walkies and a good patch could mean several minutes of sniffing.
    Then it's the dog's turn :)
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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