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Hawthorn depth?

Hi folks,


Our neighbour has a very low fence, so we want to add some heiget for privacy.   We also want a habitat for birds and any other wildlife (the previous owner had the whole garden concreted, paved and graveled so no homes or food for our feathered friends).


as such we thought a hawthorn mind with some other bits and bobs would be nice.  The issue is the garden isn't huge so we'd ideally like the hedge to be no deeper than 18inches.  We want it to grow to about 5 feet high. ( I don't really want privet - the front garden is surrounded by the stuff which I like, but want something else in the background.


Is this possible, or does it have to be deeper?  How long does Hawthorn take to grow?  Can anyone recommend where to buy plants?  I've seen some good deals on Hedges Direct website.  the local nursery I normally buy plants from doesnt sell what I'm after.




It would run almost the length of the garden.  The stones at the top will be replaced with turf later in the year.


thanks image



  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,633

    Hawthorn is wonderful for a hedge, I have one about 30 yards long. However it will be difficult to keep it to 18 inches deep.

    Buy it as whips in the Autumn, many on line suppliers.

    How can you lie there and think of England
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    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,857

    I planted hawthorn whips 12 years ago in well prepared soil and trimmed them to 9 inches high.  They grew 6' in their first year.   I cut them back to half that so they would thicken up.   They grew 6' again.

    In fact they grow about 6' every year and the hedge is now about 5' thick which is fine here a sit borders an arable field and acts as a windbreak and sparrow conference centre.

    I think you may find pyracantha is a better bet - also good for wildlife as it has spring blossom and autumn berries and thorns to keep predators away from nests.  It is also evergreen and can be kept trimmed as a hedge.    Failing that, there is an apple and pear farm round here that keeps its roadside beech hedges trimmed to about 9" deep so your 18" should be easy but beech is less attractive to wildlife.

    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Grabs39Grabs39 Posts: 18

    Thanks guys.  I was thinking it would be best to plant in Novemeber.  I have plenty of other things to be getting sorted this year, including prepping all the ground and laying some turf.


    ill certainly have a look into pyracantha.

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    November is generally a good time to plant things, especially shrubs, as the soil still has some warmth so they can put on a bit of root growth, but the weather doesn't dry them out.  Or even October.

  • Grabs39Grabs39 Posts: 18

    Cheers all.  So it looks like Hawthorn is too vigorous and thick.  Any other suggestions then, will look further into Beech and pyracantha image

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