Hedge advice needed

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Good afternoon everyone.

I have a new build house that had hedges planted when the house was finished which was a year ago but they have all but died.

other people on our development blames the condition and depth of soil which is why they aren’t thriving.

we are going to replace the hedges but wanted some advice as to what would be best. The garden faces South East and gets sun from about 10am to 3pm ish.

Also would it be worth installing a basic irrigation system for them whilst they are being replaced??

Thanks in advance for any advice given.
 
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Welcome to the forum @Gazza0210
Unless you sort out the soil first, you will never be able to grow anything. All plants need to get their feet into a fair depth of good topsoil that is free of brickdust and cement etc., and this is a very common problem on new housing estates.

The first thing to do then is start digging and find out just what you are dealing with.
Spending money on irrigation would not be my priority, and it may be an idea to consider getting a couple of bulk bags of good loam. Travis Perkins usually supplies this. top it up with some farm muck and/or well rotted horse poo and dig that in and your garden will be the star of the neighbourhood.
Some hard slog first though I reckon. Please do let us know how you get on - a photo or two is always welcome :D

What kind of hedge did you have in mind? Which end of the country are you in?
 
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We had a Lonicera nitida Hedge at our previous UK home..S E Coastal...overall attractive and easy to prune. The leaves when the sun glistens on them would be showing different shades of green to yellow. Would also look good with a trailing/climbing rose through it...But so right about getting the soil right 1st.. @Tetters @Gazza0210
 
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Griselinia is my favourite evergreen hedge if a ''tight knit'' is needed, otherwise it would be mixed with evergreen/deciduous/berries/flowers/thorns - to help the wildlife.
 
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With our summer drought conditions where it can be dry from June through to September irrigation is a must. i don’t want a mono-culture hedge. I prefer different species for bloom and colour during different seasons, evergreen, around 8’ high, deer resistant With feature species marking entrances. I’ve already prepared a short list of possibles which I’ll tender to the local nurseries.

i know what the soil conditions are from a number of test pits I’ve dug. My need is for advice on drip irrigation. Soil depth is good and it’s a sandy loam, slightly acid, will need enriched but has good structure and drains well.

I’m on the southern gulf islands in BC, known as Canada’s banana belt.
 
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Here’s my shortlist of possible hedge plants.

Prunus lusitanicus
Escallonia iveyi
Choisya ternata
Escallonia rubra macrantha
Ceanothus impressus
Cotoneaster lacteus
Osmanthus heterophyllus
Osmanthus fragrans
 
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Nice choices there, although my experience tells me that the Prunus lusitanicus and Cotoneaster lacteus might be the two bullies in the bunch.
Osmanthus delavayi and heterophyllus are two I have grown, in fact I have a row of delavayi cuttings in at the moment. They are wonderful hedging plants that seem to often be overlooked. The perfume from these is outstandingly lovely.
The Ceanothus sport ''impressus'' is one I have not yet grown, although at the nursery where I spent many happy years propagating, I think we grew almost all of the other varieties. I used ''zanzibar'' in my own hedges here and found that this one soon dwindled and looked sad after a few years as several variegated shrubs seem to - the same applies with the variegate Griselinias. My favourite of the Ceanothus is ''concha''
1614702503082.png


If you`re looking at the Escallonias, bear ''apple blossom'' in mind. The flowers really seem to stand out. As for good ol' Choisya ternata, well you just can`t go wrong there.

I have found that Weigela varieties and some of the other deciduous shrubs can help to lift a predominately evergreen hedging plan too - like Philadelphus , Deutzia (I 've grown ''pride of Rochester'') , Kolkwitzia, and Ribes ''odoratum'' which is another one for superb perfume and is perfect for mixed hedging.

Before I clear off, consider Physocarpus ''diablo'' and other shrubs with purple foliage to mix in there, a lovely contrast to the green
1614703962782.png
.......... time to go ..... I can go on a bit on this subject :sorry:
 
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Cotyledon Orbiculata Var. Oblonga ‘Macrantha’: Growing and Care Guide​

Commonly called Cotyledon macrantha, the Cotyledon orbiculata var. oblonga ‘Macrantha’ is an evergreen succulent. It is native to South Africa along with its progenitor, the Cotyledon orbiculata (Pig’s Ear Plant).

Like the Pig’s Ear Plant, the Cotyledon macrantha has large, flat, paddle-shaped leaves tinged with red around the borders. These leaves are succulent and lie almost completely flat.

A strong central trunk props multiple branches bearing these paddle leaves. When fully grown, this plant can reach about 3 feet high.



 
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Privet seems to be out of favour :) A hedge can be a good base for all sorts of wildlife. Using native plants can be good from that respect, which depends a bit on what you want from it in other ways. Intruders have been known to crash through ornamental hedges. Hawthorn will give you a good dense, prickly barrier which will protect bird nests. Gorse, prickly too, but also evergreen for better privacy. Growing a rambling rose through a hedge works well too.
On the other hand a hedge may be purely ornamental. I remember being asked to cut a tall hedge that ran between two entrances to a drive, one could walk past either end. It was outside an ancient farmhouse that the owners told me dated to the sixteen hundreds. I knew that you can date a hedge fairly accurately by the number of native species growing in it, about fifty years for each. By that reckoning the hedge predated the farmhouse by about two hundred years. I can't remember them all, but there was everything you might expect, oak, ash, willow, beech, hornbeam, holly, hawthorn and more with honeysuckle and briony growing through it. It was glorious. Ever since I have wanted to 'create an ancient hedgerow' by planting in everything I could find, except ivy maybe. It would be a bit of a give away that they were all the same age at first, but it could fool future generations :)
 

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