evergreen hedge

savannaht(8LA)October 23, 2009

I am trying to decide which plant would form the best evergreen hedge. We are considering needlepoint holly, Cleyera japonica, or Yuletide camellia. We are in north Louisiana and need the shrub to grow fairly rapidly. Thanks for any input.

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louisianagal(z7bMS)

I am not familiar with needlepoint holly. I have grown Cleyera in southeast La and NE MS now, both times in sun, and find it to be a beautiful, carefree shrub, but slow growing in my experience. I have a Yuletide, which grew a couple feet in one season. I have it in shade which I think most camellias like. Hollies like sun I think. So I guess you would have to see which growing conditions are most suitable for either/or.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2009 at 9:34PM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

I have grown all three named plants here with great success and pleasure. If you are wanting a formal, sheared hedge, I'd recommend the holly (assuming you have full sun), simply because the smaller the leaves on the plant, the neater a sheared hedge looks. However, you might want to consider an informal hedge that incorporates all three of these plants and more. One advantage is if one plant dies along the way, it will be less jolting to replace it than if the entire hedge is the same and now you can't find a plant the right size. Another advantage is multi-season interest: holly would have winter berries, sasanqua camellia would have late fall interest, Cleyera would give spring and winter interest. Some other evergreen plants you might incorporate into this type of informal hedge would be: loropetalum (spring and fall bloom), camellia japonica (winter and early spring bloom), large azaleas (spring bloom), sweet olives (fall and winter FRAGRANT bloom), banana shrub (spring and summer fragrant blooms), and Gardenia (early summer fragrant blooms). All of these will get head high or higher. Aren't we lucky to have so many wonderful evergreens to choose from? Finally, depending on the length of your hedge, an informal hedge will let you plant it gradually over time as time and money allows, AND will require far less mainteanance.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2009 at 5:43PM
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plan9fromposhmadison(8A Madison Mississippi)

If you're thinking in terms of a clipped hedge, and want FAST, then there are four choices: Wax Myrtle, Ligustrum, Elaegnus,and Leyland Cypress. Elaeagnus and Ligustrum are the only ones that are reliably long-lived, and you may not like Elaeagnus' dusty green.

We had a clipped hedge of Leyland Cypress, and it impressed some very self-important 'arbiters of taste and class'. It gave a really quick effect, and looked like green Sable.

And I'd second donnabaskets' recommendation of a mixed hedge: particularly the Michelia (banana shrub). We planted five of them, three years ago, and they form a really beautiful green wall, that has tripled in height, since planting (the fact that they're growing in front of our compost corner may have something to do with that).

    Bookmark   December 15, 2009 at 7:02PM
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brhgm(z8b LA)

Needlepoint holly, Cleyera japonica, or Yuletide camellia are all really slow growing hedges. Wax Myrtle and ligustrum are more common in the New Orleans area. Elaegnus is great for the dryer North Louisiana. I don't care for it and ripped it out of my yard. Leyland Cypress and Sweet Olive are lovely and easily managed. Yaupon Holly makes a great native hedge and comes in Dwarf, regular and Pendulum. So do the Chinese holly types like Buford and dwarf Buford. American Holly types are tree like. Have you considered a climbing rose like Peggy Martin, Sevens Sisters or Veilchenblau which have no thorns, or a thorny rose like Cherokee, Mutabilis or Dortmund for really fast coverage.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2009 at 12:36PM
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