Limelight hedge - need advice!

bonzgirlAugust 6, 2007


I have an ugly concrete retaining wall that I would like to cover with 4'-6' tall shrubs.

I just saw the picture of limelight hedge (link below), just love it!

But I have a couple of concerns...

1) The location is east facing, will gets 5-6 hours morning sun in summer, much less in winters. Would they grow in the location?

2) We see this concrete wall everytime we use our driveway, so I would like to make it look somewhat nice even in winter. Would there be any evergreen plants to go well with Limelight hedge? How should I combine two kinds of plants together?

I would really appreciate any advices.



Here is a link that might be useful:

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Limelights get huge. I had to move mine within the first year. If you only want it to be 4-6 ft tall you'll probably have to rethink the limelight choice. Mine is 4 ft after one year, and started as a smaller plant. It plans to be 8 or 10 when it grows up.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2007 at 6:30AM
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That picture takes my breath away!!! So much so, that I would probably be tempted to put up with the naked winter stems for a short winter!!

1) East facing 5-6 hours is perfectly fine for Limelight.

2) It is a paniculata and blooms on new wood so it can easily be kept to six feet with early Spring pruning, especially in the south where they don't usually put on the kind of annual growth that they do up north.

3) As far as combination plants go, I don't know how you would combine other plants and still retain the kind of hedge that is pictured in your post. IMO, it's all or nothing in that hedge situation. The neighbors might talk about you for a little while but they will do a complete 180 when they see that hedge in bloom!!! Perhaps a vine to cover the wall with green while the Limelights are dormant? Creeping fig works great down here, it's small leafed and stays very close to the wall where it won't interfear with the shrubs during the season. Not sure if 'creeping fig" is winter hardy up there or not, but the basic idea of a vine of some sort remains the same.

Good luck and thanks for posting that gorgeous picture!!..yg

    Bookmark   August 7, 2007 at 9:27AM
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Thanks yellowgirl and blue velvet elvis for your advices!

It's great to know they grow fast, but we could trim back, so it doesn't get giant... :)

I'm a bit concerned about the width/depth, too. Should I really plant 7'-8' apart? Or it will be looking more like the pictures I posted if I planted 5' apart instead??

As for depth, do they grow fairly deep, too?? I have some spot that I have only 3' feet between concrete wall & driveway. Is it something we can also trim back, so they stay nice??

If you have any experience controlling them, it would be great to know! My parents-in-law has laurel hedge that they hate now that they have to trim down every year. I don't really prefer to have that kind of high maintenance... ;)


    Bookmark   August 7, 2007 at 12:54PM
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3 feet depth is not enough for any paniculata. Even 5' is too skimpy. 7-8' probably the right depth.
Yes, you'll be facing yearly late winter/early spring pruning + intermediate repruning of some stubborn branches that don't want to grow exactly as you said to them.
IMO, you got a wrong idea and should abandon it. There are plenty of evergreen shrubs for z8 that will serve the purpose of hiding the concrete foundation wall.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2007 at 1:48PM
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What ego said... with the exception that pruning it as severely as it would need to be would remove your blooms for the year. Then you just have a regular shrub.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 7:16PM
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Thanks for more information, ego45 and blue_velvet_elvis.

I guess it's not the right plant for my wall...

I just wanted to have nice flowers besides the evergreen leaves to look at. I tried evergreen cleamatis, but it won't really cover whole wall. I'll need to do more search. :)


    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 7:59PM
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Why not try gardenias. They bloom several times during the spring and summer and are evergreen. Beautiful! Check out the different varieties and see what you think.

They aren't limelights, but what is????!!!!!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2007 at 10:45PM
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I'm with Yellowgirl on this one. Perfect location. Beautiful plant.

You'll need to prune it every year and it's a spectacular flowering bush. This plant will turn your awful concrete wall into an artful concrete wall.

Prune it when it flowers and spread the LimeLight. I don't think this one could be in the same class as an annoying, cloying, dirty hedge. I've had those. You can see by its habit it's easily manageable. I'd rather be cutting flowers than messy leaves, any day.

I just wish I had a place for Limelight. Been eyeing that one for ages.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2007 at 12:00AM
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Perhaps dwarf crape myrtles? If I ever move to a warmer zone I'm filling up a truck and filling my new yard with them. They're the plant I want most that won't grow here.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 5:59AM
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Bonzgirl - If you want a similar look but on a smaller scale you might consider Hydrangea Little Lamb. It does not have green flowers, rather white flowers that turn pink. For me the plant is about 4' tall

Here is a link that might be useful: Little Lamb picture

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 8:59AM
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LOL..Blue velvet elvis...Do we all want what we can't have??? I would trade my Crape Myrtles for your paniculatas any day!! With the exception of color, the similarities between the two are pretty striking, but paniculatas don't make the mess (hard seed shells) that myrtles do!!....yg

    Bookmark   August 10, 2007 at 6:33PM
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Try the dwarf version, it is new this year and would work fine. i have a hedge of limelights, and it is my favorite spot in my yard. i have mine planted about 6 feet apart, but the dwarf would have to be closer.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 7:46PM
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We have a large backyard. Along one side of the backyard, I would like to plant a hedge of Limelight Hydrangea. How far apart should I plant them for a good looking result?

    Bookmark   August 9, 2011 at 4:11PM
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