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Is it always a bad idea planting large laurel plants?

LunarJimLunarJim Posts: 56

We need a hedge for privacy from first floor windows.  We like Portugese laurel much more than the common type but it doesn't grow nearly as quickly.  Will large shrubs (2.5 metres or so) establish quickly and then grow?  We have seen the plants, they are at at well regarded nursery and are pot grown and have plenty of side branches.  They are also expensive!

This thread suggests we should buy something much smaller but then we will have to wait ten years for some privacy as we need to get to three metres to even have some privacy.  We are not keen on conifers.

Thanks for any advice.


  • LynLyn Posts: 21,375

    Ok Jim, look at this hedge, I planted these in winter 2012. They were 45 cms, eighteen inches or so. Bearing in mind I have cut them many times because I only want to keep them at 7' for reaching purposes, they have served the purpose.

    You could spend out on tall ones, but did you see a thread started by Befuddled? They were no good. He thought they were pot grown, they weren't they were just put in a pot for selling. If yours are already 2.5 mts they will be pretty pot bound. Take one out of the pot and have a look, but that size tree would need to be in at least 60cm pots to grow properly.

    maybe your garden outlet is good, I don't know, but they will still need time to establish  After planting, there's more chance of wind rock.

    Mine were so cheap, can't quite remember I don't know if eBay stores details of sales that long ago, but I wouldn't buy big ones.

    At the end of the day, it's your choice. All I can do is point out a few things, but for me, it's small and be patient every time.



    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,757

    I agree with everything Lyn has said.  Small hedge plants will catch up and pass larger ones every time.  image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • LynLyn Posts: 21,375

    Thanks Dove, I sometimes get the feeling......

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • LynLyn Posts: 21,375

    Just like to add that in certain areas, hedges may need to be kept  to 2 mtrs. Maybe best to check with your local council first, you could find your neighbours trimming them for you!

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • LunarJimLunarJim Posts: 56

    There is a footpath between us and the neighbours, so they won't be trimming it, at least not legally!

    Your hedge looks good Lyn but it is common laurel, that grows quite a lot faster than portugese laurel.  I can't see something catching up 2.5 metres - the difference between 45cm plants and 3m ones.  I have seen the post by Befuddled, it is the one I linked to in my original post image.  We won't be buying from ebay, and yes they are in 60cm pots but may go to one size down as wind rock is a very good point.

  • LynLyn Posts: 21,375

    Just looked on RHS Website, says they grow 12 mts in 20-50years, have you got that long.

    I thought you wanted something to give you a quick tall screening.

    If the footpath is a council owned one, you will have to be careful about planting something with poisonous berries.

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

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