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Planting two year old old native hedging plants

I bought some 1 year old native hedging bare root plants last winter but didn't have the area prepared where I wanted to plant the hedge, so I planted them (not heeled in) in part of my vegetable garden and kept them watered throughout the summer.
So now some of the plants - especially dog rose and blackthorn are 5' - 6' tall.  Two questions:

1. Should I reduce the height of these taller plants?
2.  I now have the area prepared;  should I plant them out this autumn (they are still in full leaf), or should I wait until winter when presumably the plants will be dormant?


  • 1. I planted some birch that were treated in a similar way and about that height and they were fine without reducing the height but it might be an idea if you thought they could be blown over before the roots settle. The ones I planted did not have much to catch the wind when the leaves had fallen off and were filling gaps in other recently planted hedge plants so seemed safe enough because the other hedge plants were offering some shelter.

    2. I think waiting for the leaves to fall so they are dormant would be better for the hedge plants.

    Happy gardening!

  • Arthur1Arthur1 Posts: 538
    Best time to replant would be October because there is still warmth in the soil allowing the roots to establish.
    There are 2 advantages to cutting your plants back. First, they will establish better as the roots will have less top growth to supply. Second they will bush out and you will get a dense well branched hedge. I would cut back by as least two thirds.
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,818
    Agree.  Wait till leaf fall or late October, whichever happens first, then re-plant in your chosen spot and cut back by half to 2/3rds to help reduce root rock while they get established and also to encourage them to bush out next spring.

    Feed them again next spring and water in any dry spells throughout the growing season.  Prune again next summer but just if they get too wide.  Otherwise, prune again the following spring reducing height and width to make them bush out and thicken.  Repeat feeding and pruning every spring till they get to the desired height and width and to maintain them there in following years.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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