Help needed please with laurel hedge issues...
Missouri United States
Yes, is. Lol
It's an English Laurel. I was just reaffirming what all of you said.
Regardless of your desired end results, if you cut it, it will grow back 2 or three fold.
I can't wait to see what Frank has in store. Even though he looks sad and pathetic now, in 3-4 weeks I'm sure to have many buds to work with.
The other 2 in the pot have more branches to work with, this one only lost 2 that were farther down, but I felt sorry for the guy so I'm making him a special project.
Sorry for the confusion.
I'll let you know how it works out.
Love this thread - it's the first I've seen that really talks about dealing with a laurel hedge. I'm in the US, California, dealing with Carolina Cherry Laurel. I'm trying to figure out how to renew/refresh an OLD hedge. I bought a house 6 months ago that had been owned by the same owner for 41 years. She surrounded the backyard with a laurel hedge when the house was new - about half of which has been well maintained, though I'm working on getting a lot of trash trees cut out of it. The other half was not well maintained - the lower 6' is very woody and bare, and you can see a line where it had originally been kept trimmed at around 7' tall - but from that point now, there are long 4-5' shoots reaching to the sky. It doesn't help that this stretch is in the shade of a very large tree most of the day. This is along a masonry wall that is about 5' tall, so in my ideal world, I would be able to somehow trim these down and rejuvenate them to be 7 or 8' total height or less- I'm just afraid the trunks are too large and woody. Has anyone ever tried to rejuvenate a plant this poorly maintained? Am i going to be better off ripping them all out and starting over? I just hate to give up on what is likely a very established root system. I know there are a few in there that are obviously dead, but seeing those big shoots out of the top makes me think there might be hope.
You could try taking one down to 1 foot then waiting to see if it sprouts new growth. If it does then repeat with the others. Take out the dead ones anyway.
Central Norfolk UK
I’ve seen a huge mature laurel hedge cut down to short stumps and it rejuvenated and within a few years it was a thick and smart hedge.
I would do exactly as
My one additional suggestion is that the roots are in a potentially very dry area (a rain shadow created by the wall as well as being a narrow bed) and will need plenty of watering (real soakings) in the spring and summer if it’s going to produce lots of lushness new growth.
“I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.”
Winnie the Pooh
Hello, This is my first post to the forum so hello to all and thank you in advance for any help,
I've come across this particular thread which has been so helpful and wow you guys helped befuddled.
Background is that I'm a complete newby to gardening and planted some laurels in November all rootball in hessain.
Unfortunately i've had some issues with the laurels being disturbed (pulled out after planting, not by me)
About 4 weeks the green leaves just started falling off and i was befuddled why and how and then came across this thread which given been me confidence that i can get the Laurels back to a good screen/hedge.
So from this issue i understand that i need to cut them back but i have some particular questions which would really help me out.
1. How much shall i cut them back e.g height?
2. When is best to complete this - I was advised March?
3. Do I also cut from the sides as well as the top?
4. When cutting back is there a best secton of the laurel to aim for.
I don't think the photos are in order but you will see one image of all the Laurels together and the left hand side seems to be fine it is the right hand side that appears to have suffered most from the shock of uprooting.
So little unsure if i should just concentrate on one side only. Its strange as it appears on some of the Laurels to be just a middle section but i suspect over the next few weeks more leafs will fall off.
So much appreciated for any help.
Purely anecdotal, but I've been mean to my Laurels. One I had in the ground from a cutting for two years, it just got going and I dug it up. Put it somewhere, then into a pot, then it got very dry, and lost all her leaves, then I made some effort to water. And eventually all the leaves came back. But some wood had died back - which I cut back. Now she is a nice tidy potted shrub. They look pretty good this time of year. Mine did bleed a bit, so would be good to confirm the correct time for planting. I've also heard people having a job to get rid of established trees, even when taking down to the ground.
You have not planted them long, so they will need time to settle in. I recommend you prune them back to where the branches darken to almost black. It's roughly half back. They don't look too thick so cut back to areas where there are leaves. If you have stray branches that flop forward, you can also remove those. Wait till spring or late spring to avoid harsh frost getting to newly pruned branches. They hopefully will thicken up over the year.
Leaves dropping can be due to stress, like wind and lack of water, or as you say something digging them up so the roots may be losing contact with the soil. It's essential you check they are planted in well and top dress with some bark chip mulch to keep moisture in and help keep the soil cool in summer.
Thank you Borderline for the comments Can i just check on a couple of items please.
Prune them back to where the branches darken to almost black
- Remove any green stems on the laurels taking them back to the dark brown.
They don't look too thick so cut back to areas where there are leaves
Some have leaves at the top and then some have no leaves at all now in this case should i just adopt the cut back to the dark brown stem areas only? Seems the majority of the plants might go back to about a foot height adopting this approach?
Hi all, I would also like some help please and the same as befuddled I’m not a gardener but so impressed with the advise and guidance given, and the fact the post follows through for the last 3/4 years, I spent a couple of hours last night reading through the 23 pages.
So I’ll try and keep it short and have taken some photos today,
I moved in 2 years ago and have a corner plot, the front of the house I’m generally happy with but not sure what I can do, it looks like something is have a feast at the front
happy with the height but up close the quality of the plant looks poor, should I treat or just put in some fish bones and blood fertiliser?
Then I come to the side of the property
Which has two issues the first half is very yellow compared to the rest, and the part by the garage is greener but up close is very bare
I don’t know if I should be concerned that they are to close to the garage or if they will be fine with that, I probably have 200/300mm space toward the path.
where do I start? What should I do?
Thank in advance and I would also like to keep updating the progress.
edited 11 February
Methodisplantitandsee, yes, when I say prune back to the dark branches, it really is pruned to the older wood. It looks drastic, but your plants may have been suffering with lack of watering at the early stage of planting. It's very unlikely it will rejuvenate. The idea is to take the stress out of the plant. Right now, all it's doing is hanging on and creating spindly weak stems from the top. Even if there are some healthy looking leaves, they will still look sparse. The aim is a more bushy close knit bush.
TRW, your shrubs are very established and most likely suffering from shot hole infection, and not likely to cause major harm to the shrubs. Sometimes, dampness within the bush or areas where it is planted densely against a wall can cause it more, but again, on an establish bush, new growth will take over soon, and with that and pruning, your shrubs should recover.
If you have more yellow leaves, it could be compacted soil, so check the soil in those areas. Drive a garden fork down the soil to loosen the soil, and top-dress with compost or bark chip mulch.