The Q&A Archives: Annual Growth Rate Of Privet Hedge

Question: We are planning on planting hedges as a border between our property and our neighbors'. What can we expect for a growth rate per year, and are there any hedges with a faster growth rate than privet? We want the hedges to reach a height of 4-6 feet.

Answer: Privet is probably the fastest growing hedge plant you will find. It can grow three feet a year with adequate water and nutrients. The first year training is critical for establishing a good dense framework for the hedge. So, hard as it may be, you will need to trim it off several times to encourage it to branch at the base. Be sure to trim it wider at the base than at the top so that light can reach all of the branches. If you don't, it will be tall and thin and flimsy, and bare at the bottom rather than the nice thick visual barrier you desire. You will probably have the height you want, with good depth and an attractive appearance, late in the second year. If you want something sooner than that, consider a fence, or for a softer look, a fence covered with a vine.

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