11 February 2010

Hedging: Should I Use Cherry Laurel?



So, I'm getting antsy to provide a privacy hedge between our house and the neighbors along our front driveway. The neighbors are fine, but I'm just tired of looking at their air conditioner unit.

And I'd also love to begin "walling in" my expansive suburban-style front garden. For my home, I'd like a more intimate and private feeling space, and just don't have the cajones to wall it in all Santa Fe style.

Half of the imaginary future hedge is in pretty full sun, while the other part is in shade under an oak. I don't want to have to water after establishment.

I hear that Cherry Laurel (Prunus caroliniana) may be able to fit the bill, and I'd love to use a native if possible. Apparently, it can be a bit invasive, but could it be worse than all the baby ligustrums I'm always weeding out?

What do ya'll think in the blogosphere: For or against cherry laurel? Any better options?

10 comments:

TmmTx said...

Eh, Laurels of any type are going to be invasive, plus, all those berries falling off that just make a big black mess when they squish. I'd go for bay laurel if you want one. At least then you can use the leaves in cooking. If you want a bit native hedge you can't go wrong with Silverado sage. Trimmed up nicely they can provide a very nice year round screen and the bumble bees love them.

Anonymous said...

I believe Cherry Laurel likes to grow big like a tree, but I may be wrong. Evergreen Sumac might fit the bill or the ubiquitous Yaupon Holly...Non-natives like Bush Germander, Xylosma (John Dromgoule has claims to have it at his home) and abelia (used at St. Edward's) might also work. I've also seen a dwarf variety of pomegranate used as a hedge, and it looked pretty good. White mistflower (native) could be another choice. Laura

Pam/Digging said...

We just don't seem to have great hedging options in central Texas. A loose shrubby border is do-able, but it sounds like you're looking for a more wall-like feel? What about a series of trellis screens that you grow vines on? You'll get the immediate result of the screen, and the vines will fill in much more quickly than a hedge. It won't feel as permanent as a wall, nor will it cost so much.

The East Texas Trader said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LindaCTG said...

I vote for cherry laurel, 'Bright & Tight'. Wish I'd done it years ago. Wildlife attractor, too. Another good choice is xylosma. You can see it at The Natural Gardener, and it can be hedged if you like that idea. I also rely on evergreen viburnums for my hedge. Many great options for those and they take sun/shade/low water and are very trouble free. Per Tmm, bay laurel good but slower. Or have you considered clumping bamboo? Pricey, but another great option. There are many varieties, tall & short. Throw in a Belinda or Mutabilis rose. My Mutabilis does not get full sun and it's covered a chain link fence beautifully. Trouble free, too.

Anonymous said...

No. I had some many years ago and am still pulling up seedlings. Try one of the many hollies. Needlepoint is dense, has multitude of berries and, of course, is evergreen.

Lee said...

Well shucks! I was hoping for some overwhelming consensus, but this ain't it!

Seriously though, thanks for all the comments folks. Very helpful. I'm steering towards a more mixed border, and may throw a cherry laurel or two in their anyway. I want to provide food for birds, after all, and will have to look for "bright & tight."

Bonnie said...

What about mountain laurel? then you get the grape kool-aid flowers! Yum!

Randy said...

What about Wax Myrtle? They do well in sun and shade as does pittosporum (although it's not a native it does great in this area). I like Pam's idea of the trellis' as well.

Emilio said...

Laurel hedging is very popular in the UK. Cherry laurel can grow extremely well in any kind of soil and provide great privacy as the leaves are big and very thick.