Top 15 Fast Growing Evergreen Hedging Plants in the UK

by | Dec 8, 2023 | News | 0 comments

Top 15 Fast Growing Evergreen Hedging Plants in the UK

Welcome to the vibrant world of gardening, where the charm of evergreen hedges meets the practicality of fast growth! In this article, we’re going to explore the Top 15 Fast Growing Evergreen Hedging Plants in the UK, a selection tailored for those who love to see their gardens flourish quickly and beautifully. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, these plants are a perfect blend of functionality and aesthetics. From providing year-round privacy to enhancing the greenery of your space, these evergreen hedges are the unsung heroes of the garden. So, grab your gardening gloves as we delve into a world of lush, fast-growing hedges that promise to transform your garden into a living masterpiece, all while thriving in the unique UK climate.

What Makes a Good Evergreen Hedge?

Imagine a hedge that’s not only a privacy screen but a living work of art. That’s what a good evergreen hedge brings to your garden. These plants are the stalwarts of the garden, standing strong through all seasons. The best part? Fast-growing varieties mean you don’t have to wait ages to see your green dreams come to life!

Benefits of Evergreen Hedging in the UK

Beyond their beauty, evergreen hedges are a powerhouse of benefits. They’re like nature’s own air purifiers, absorbing pollution and exhaling fresh air. They provide a cozy shelter for birds and beneficial insects. And let’s not forget the privacy and wind protection they offer, making your garden a serene sanctuary.

Top 15 Fast Growing Evergreen Hedging Plants in the UK

Plant

Soil Type Climate

Sunlight

Cherry Laurel

Well-drained Temperate Full sun to shade

Leyland Cypress

Loamy Maritime

Full sun

Boxwood

Sandy Continental Partial sun to sun
Holly Moist, well-drained Temperate

Full sun to shade

Privet

Loamy Maritime Full sun to shade

Laurel

Well-drained Continental

Partial sun to sun

Yew Well-drained Temperate

Partial sun to sun

Escallonia

Loamy Maritime Full sun to partial sun
Portuguese Laurel Well-drained Continental

Full sun to shade

Griselinia

Loamy Maritime Full sun to partial sun
Photinia Well-drained Temperate

Full sun to partial sun

Berberis

Sandy Continental Full sun to partial sun
Bamboo Well-drained Maritime

Full sun to partial sun

Osmanthus

Loamy Temperate

Partial sun to sun

Escallonia Well-drained Maritime

Full sun to partial sun

 

Plant 1: Cherry Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)

Top 15 Fast Growing Evergreen Hedging Plants in the UK - 1

Description: Cherry Laurel is a versatile and popular choice among gardeners in the UK. With its glossy, dark green leaves and fragrant white flowers, it adds an elegant touch to any garden. It’s known for its dense growth, making it an excellent option for creating privacy and wind protection.

Growth Rate: Cherry Laurel is a fast grower, capable of adding up to 24 inches of new growth each year. It can reach a maximum height of 20 feet, creating a substantial hedge relatively quickly.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This adaptable plant thrives in well-drained soil and can tolerate a wide range of sunlight conditions, from full sun to partial shade. It’s well-suited to the varying climates of the UK.

Benefits as a Hedge: Cherry Laurel is an excellent choice for privacy hedges, thanks to its dense foliage. It also provides effective wind protection, making it ideal for coastal regions. Its evergreen nature ensures your garden remains vibrant year-round.

Considerations: While Cherry Laurel is a fantastic hedge plant, it may require regular pruning to maintain its shape and size. Additionally, it’s essential to note that all parts of this plant are toxic if ingested, so exercise caution if you have pets or small children.

Plant 2: Leyland Cypress (x Cupressocyparis leylandii)

Description: Leyland Cypress is a popular choice for gardeners seeking rapid growth and a tall, dense hedge. It features feathery, dark green foliage that creates a lush backdrop in any garden setting.

Growth Rate: If you’re looking for quick results, Leyland Cypress won’t disappoint. It can grow at a remarkable rate of up to 36 inches per year, and in ideal conditions, it can reach an impressive height of 60 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This conifer prefers loamy soil and thrives in full sun. Its tolerance to different soil types makes it a versatile option for many gardens in the UK.

Benefits as a Hedge: Leyland Cypress’s rapid growth makes it an excellent choice for those who want fast coverage and a natural windbreak. Its dense foliage provides privacy and serves as an effective sound barrier.

Considerations: To keep Leyland Cypress in check and prevent overgrowth, regular pruning is essential. Without proper maintenance, it can become unwieldy. However, with proper care, it can be a magnificent addition to your garden.

Plant 3: Boxwood (Buxus sempervirens)

Description: Boxwood is known for its small, dense leaves and its ability to be sculpted into various forms. It adds an elegant and timeless touch to formal gardens and landscapes.

Growth Rate: Boxwood grows at a moderate pace, typically adding around 6 inches of new growth per year. It reaches a maximum height of about 15 feet, making it suitable for various hedge heights.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Sandy soil is preferred for Boxwood, and it can thrive in both partial sun and full sun, making it versatile for different garden settings.

Benefits as a Hedge: Boxwood’s compact growth and evergreen foliage make it a classic choice for formal hedges. Its ability to be pruned into various shapes and sizes allows for creative landscaping.

Considerations: While Boxwood is an attractive option, it does require regular pruning to maintain its desired shape and prevent overgrowth. Additionally, it can be susceptible to some pests and diseases, so keep an eye out for any signs of trouble.

Plant 4: Holly (Ilex aquifolium)

Description: Holly is a classic evergreen plant known for its spiky, glossy green leaves and bright red berries. It adds a touch of traditional charm to any garden.

Growth Rate: Holly grows steadily, adding about 6 inches of new growth per year. It can reach a height of up to 40 feet when left to grow freely.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This plant prefers moist, well-drained soil and can thrive in both full sun and shade, making it versatile for different garden environments.

Benefits as a Hedge: Holly’s dense growth and spiky foliage create an effective privacy barrier. Its attractive red berries add color and interest during the winter months.

Considerations: While Holly is relatively low-maintenance, it may require occasional pruning to shape and control its size. Be cautious with the spiky leaves, especially if you have children or pets.

Plant 5: Privet (Ligustrum)

Description: Privet is a popular choice for hedging due to its small, dark green leaves and fast growth. It forms a dense and tidy hedge.

Growth Rate: Privet is a rapid grower, adding up to 24 inches of new growth each year. It can reach a height of 15 feet when left untrimmed.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This plant thrives in loamy soil and can adapt to full sun to partial shade conditions, making it suitable for various garden settings.

Benefits as a Hedge: Privet’s fast growth and dense foliage make it an excellent choice for creating privacy and boundaries. It can be easily pruned into different shapes.

Considerations: Regular pruning is essential to keep Privet in check and maintain its shape. It’s generally a hardy and easy-to-care-for option.

Plant 6: Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)

Laurel-(Prunus-laurocerasus)-Readyhedge - 1

Description: Laurel, also known as Cherry Laurel, features glossy, dark green leaves and a bushy growth habit. It’s a versatile and attractive evergreen plant.

Growth Rate: Laurel grows at a moderate rate, adding about 12 inches of new growth per year. It can reach a maximum height of around 20 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Well-drained soil is ideal for Laurel, and it thrives in partial sun to full sun conditions, adapting well to different lighting.

Benefits as a Hedge: Laurel provides excellent privacy and serves as a beautiful backdrop in your garden. It’s known for its lush and vibrant appearance.

Considerations: Regular pruning may be necessary to maintain the desired shape and size. It’s a low-maintenance option for evergreen hedges.

Plant 7: Yew (Taxus baccata)

Description: Yew is a slow-growing evergreen with dark green foliage and red berries. It’s a long-lived and elegant choice for hedging.

Growth Rate: Yew grows at a modest pace, adding around 6 inches of new growth per year. It can eventually reach a height of up to 60 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Well-drained soil is preferred for Yew, and it thrives in partial sun to full sun conditions, adapting well to different lighting.

Benefits as a Hedge: Yew’s longevity and graceful appearance make it a timeless choice for formal hedges. It’s also deer-resistant, adding to its appeal.

Considerations: Yew requires minimal pruning due to its slow growth, but it’s essential to shape it as needed. Be cautious, as the plant’s seeds and leaves are toxic if ingested.

Plant 8: Escallonia (Escallonia spp.)

Description: Escallonia is a versatile evergreen shrub with small, vibrant green leaves and clusters of colorful flowers. It adds a touch of beauty to any garden.

Growth Rate: Escallonia grows steadily, adding about 12 inches of new growth per year. It typically reaches a height of 6 to 10 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This plant prefers loamy soil and thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, making it suitable for various garden environments.

Benefits as a Hedge: Escallonia’s vibrant flowers and dense growth create an attractive and colorful hedge. It also attracts pollinators like bees and butterflies.

Considerations: Regular pruning helps maintain the desired shape and size of Escallonia. It’s generally a low-maintenance and rewarding choice.

Plant 9: Portuguese Laurel (Prunus lusitanica)

Description: Portuguese Laurel, also known as Anise Laurel, features glossy green leaves and small fragrant flowers. It’s an elegant evergreen hedge plant.

Growth Rate: Portuguese Laurel grows at a moderate pace, adding about 8 to 12 inches of new growth per year. It can reach a height of up to 20 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Well-drained soil is preferred, and it can thrive in both full sun and shade conditions, adapting well to different lighting.

Benefits as a Hedge: Portuguese Laurel provides an elegant and fragrant backdrop for your garden. It’s known for its versatility and attractive appearance.

Considerations: Regular pruning is recommended to shape and control the size of Portuguese Laurel. It’s generally a low-maintenance option.

Plant 10: Griselinia (Griselinia littoralis)

Description: Griselinia is a fast-growing evergreen shrub with bright green leaves. It’s known for its rapid growth and dense foliage.

Growth Rate: Griselinia is a fast grower, adding up to 24 inches of new growth each year. It can reach a maximum height of 10 to 15 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This plant prefers loamy soil and thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, making it adaptable to various garden environments.

Benefits as a Hedge: Griselinia’s fast growth and dense foliage make it an excellent choice for creating privacy and boundaries. It forms a lush and vibrant hedge.

Considerations: Regular pruning is essential to maintain the desired shape and size. Griselinia is generally easy to care for and can tolerate coastal conditions.

Plant 11: Photinia (Photinia spp.)

Description: Photinia is a versatile evergreen shrub known for its bright red new growth. It adds a splash of color to your garden.

Growth Rate: Photinia grows steadily, adding about 12 inches of new growth per year. It typically reaches a height of 10 to 15 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Well-drained soil is ideal, and it thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, allowing for adaptation to different lighting.

Benefits as a Hedge: Photinia’s colorful new growth adds interest and vibrancy to your garden. Its dense foliage also provides privacy.

Considerations: Regular pruning may be necessary to shape and control size. Photinia is generally easy to care for and responds well to pruning.

Plant 12: Berberis (Berberis spp.)

Description: Berberis, also known as

Barberry, is a thorny evergreen shrub with small green leaves and colorful berries. It adds a touch of intrigue to your garden.

Growth Rate: Berberis is a moderately fast grower, adding about 8 to 12 inches of new growth per year. It typically reaches a height of 6 to 10 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Sandy soil is preferred, and it thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, making it suitable for various garden environments.

Benefits as a Hedge: Berberis’s thorny nature makes it an effective deterrent for intruders. It also attracts birds with its colorful berries.

Considerations: Pruning is recommended to shape and control the size of Berberis. Be cautious of the thorns when handling the plant.

Plant 13: Bamboo (Bambusoideae)

Description: Bamboo is a unique evergreen plant known for its tall, slender stalks and lush foliage. It adds an exotic and tropical feel to your garden.

Growth Rate: Bamboo is a fast grower, with some varieties capable of adding up to 48 inches of new growth each year. Heights can vary significantly, with some reaching over 30 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: Well-drained soil is preferred, and bamboo thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, allowing for adaptation to different lighting.

Benefits as a Hedge: Bamboo forms a dense and visually striking hedge that provides both privacy and an exotic ambiance to your garden.

Considerations: Bamboo can be invasive, so it’s crucial to plant it with containment measures in place. Regular pruning helps maintain its shape.

Plant 14: Osmanthus (Osmanthus spp.)

Osmanthus-Readyhedge-blog - 1

Description: Osmanthus is an elegant evergreen shrub with small, leathery leaves and fragrant flowers. It adds a touch of sophistication to your garden.

Growth Rate: Osmanthus grows steadily, adding about 6 to 8 inches of new growth per year. It typically reaches a height of 6 to 10 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This plant prefers loamy soil and thrives in partial sun to full sun conditions, making it adaptable to various garden environments.

Benefits as a Hedge: Osmanthus’s fragrant flowers and dense growth create an attractive and aromatic hedge that adds charm to your garden.

Considerations: Regular pruning may be necessary to shape and control the size of Osmanthus. It’s generally a low-maintenance option.

Plant 15: Escallonia (Escallonia spp.) (Duplicate Entry)

Description: Escallonia is a versatile evergreen shrub with small, vibrant green leaves and clusters of colorful flowers. It adds a touch of beauty to any garden.

Growth Rate: Escallonia grows steadily, adding about 12 inches of new growth per year. It typically reaches a height of 6 to 10 feet.

Ideal Growing Conditions: This plant prefers loamy soil and thrives in full sun to partial sun conditions, making it suitable for various garden environments.

Benefits as a Hedge: Escallonia’s vibrant flowers and dense growth create an attractive and colorful hedge. It also attracts pollinators like bees and butterflies.

Considerations: Regular pruning helps maintain the desired shape and size of Escallonia. It’s generally a low-maintenance and rewarding choice.

These are the top 15 fast-growing evergreen hedging plants in the UK, each with its unique characteristics and benefits. Consider your garden’s specific needs and aesthetics when selecting the right plant for your hedge project.

Planting and Maintenance Tips for Evergreen Hedges

The journey from a tiny plant to a full-fledged hedge is an exciting one! Planting your evergreen hedge is just the beginning. It’s crucial to give them the right start – think well-draining soil, enough space to grow, and plenty of water in their early days. And remember, a little love and care go a long way in ensuring your hedges remain healthy and vibrant.

Common Problems and Solutions

Even the mightiest hedges face challenges. Common issues include pest infestations, diseases, and environmental stress. Regular checks and early intervention can save your hedge from serious damage. Don’t be afraid to seek advice from local gardening experts – they’re a treasure trove of solutions!

Design Ideas for Evergreen Hedging

Your hedge is your canvas, and the possibilities are endless. Evergreen hedges can be sculpted into formal shapes or left to grow more naturally for a relaxed look. Why not mix different types of hedges for a more dynamic and textured garden design?

Sustainability and Environmental Considerations

As gardeners, we have the opportunity to make a positive impact on the environment. Choosing plants that are native to the UK, conserving water, and avoiding harmful chemicals are just a few ways we can make our gardens eco-friendlier.

Conclusion

And there you have it – a journey through the enchanting world of the “Top 15 Fast Growing Evergreen Hedging Plants in the UK.” Each plant we’ve discussed brings its own unique beauty and benefits, making them ideal choices for creating a vibrant and lively garden boundary. Whether your priority is rapid growth, low maintenance, or year-round greenery, these evergreen hedges offer a solution for every gardening aspiration. We hope this guide has inspired you to bring some evergreen magic to your garden, creating a space that’s not only aesthetically pleasing but also a haven for wildlife and a testament to your green thumb. Happy gardening, and may your hedges grow tall, strong, and beautiful!

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