Woody is unsightly, scraggly, spindly, yellowish, messy, and scraggly. This isn’t a list of the characters in a snoozing princess fairy tale. If you’re like most people, it’s the appropriate description for that sad-looking hedge that surrounds your yard.
Rows of densely planted shrubs can be a visually appealing way to define borders and boundary lines, keep children and pets in (or out), and provide food and shelter for birds. Hedges, like other plants, require regular watering, feeding, and pruning to look their best. Though some may overlook providing their roots with adequate water in hot weather or fertilizing in the early spring with a balanced 10-10-10 mix, this is where the majority of us go wrong.
Here Are Some Expert Tips For Maintaining Hedge Plantings.
1. Hand-Pruning Is Essential In Conjunction With Shearing.
Taking off branch tips with shears—whether hand-held pruners with long scissor-like blades or a power trimmer—keep hedges neat while also stimulating bud creation towards the plants’ edges.
However, as a shrub’s buds multiply, it can become so dense that sunlight cannot enter it, inhibiting inner growth. As a result, the hedge grows larger each year and appears lifeless on the inside. Pruning gets some light in and allows you to prune bushes back so they don’t get too huge.
2. In The Winter, Prune The Trees.
Hedges should ideally be pruned in late winter when plants are dormant and haven’t produced buds—especially if you’re cutting back significantly. “You don’t want them to break bud before you prune,” an expert says, “because you want the plant’s energy to go toward producing new growth where you want it.” “If you cut off a plant’s buds, you’re cutting off spent energy, and the hedge will take longer to fill out.”
Evergreens, in particular, require pruning early in the season; because they’re generally slower-growing, they’re likely to be bare (where interior cuts have been made) and off-color (too yellow) at the tips as new growth begins to show, well into the summer.
3. Before You Start Planting, Figure Out How Tall And Wide You Want Your Hedge To Be.
If you’re starting from scratch, consider plants that naturally grow upright and tight, such as those with the terms ‘columnar’ or ‘fastigiate’ in their names. For formal Hedge Trimming Ottawa, shrubs like yew, privet, and boxwood must be tolerant of shearing and frequent pruning. A hedge should have a minimum width of 3 feet. Maintaining your hedge at around eye level will make it easy to maintain; alternatively, be prepared to climb a ladder to reach the top reaches.
Before you start planting, figure out how tall and wide you want your hedge to be. “Research the habit of any plant you want to hedge, then choose a variety that won’t outgrow your space,” an Ottawa expert advises. Otherwise, cutting the hedge down to size will be a difficult task.”
4. The Top Of The Hedge Should Be Narrower, And The Bottom Should Be Wider.
Most hedges will begin to widen near the top, where they receive the most sunshine if left alone. As a result, the lower branches form a V shape, which shades them out and causes them to produce fewer and fewer leaves.
Experts respond, “You want to turn that V upside down.” Whether the top is flat, pointy, or rounded, a sheared hedge should always be broader at the bottom and narrower at the top.
When shearing, begin at the bottom and work your way up. You can also use a string line between stakes to ensure an even line along the top for absolute precision cutting, but Ottawa Tree Pruning Experts prefer to rely on his eye for a more natural look.
5. Understand The Distinction Between A Hedge And Privacy Plants.
Expect a hedge to provide little privacy or to obscure an unwelcome view. Hedges are usually kept at a height of 6 to 8 feet, with privacy plantings reaching up to 30 feet. Screen plantings, in general, are significantly wider, consisting of a natural mix of staggered evergreen and deciduous trees, shrubs, and perennials.
“Let a hedge be a hedge,” Expert Ottawa advises, “a beautiful shrub border that encloses your yard and unifies the scenery.” “Start looking at big trees if you’re searching for privacy.”