The Q&A Archives: Hedge for Salt Wind, Shade And Inner City

Question: I live in the inner city Boston, off a busy street with the wind directly off the ocean. I would like a nice four foot or higher, hedge, flowers would be nice, to define, enhance, protect and enhance privacy.

Answer: Well, I can make a few suggestions, but more information as to the specifics of the site would be helpful. You mention shade, but not whether it is light shade, part shade or full dense shade. This is a question which needs more specific answers in order to choose the shrub most likely to do well for your conditions. But here are a few to check out depending on your site and desires:

Clethra anifolia, Summersweet, is very adaptable. Tolerates even complete shade. Does not like alkaline or very dry soil. One of the few hedge plants that tolerates seaside conditions! It has fragrant white or pink flowers in mid summer and yellow fall foliage. Grows to 5 feet. An excellent choice for a deciduous hedge.

Ilex glabra 'Compacta', inkberry holly, is also considered a good choice for seashore landscapes. Likes wet, acidic conditions. Grows most dense in full to half sun, but can be grown in light shade. Fine-textured with small, glossy leaves with a dark green color. Although a broadleaf evergreen, its leaves do turn a brownish green in winter. The fruit is small and black, not the red berries often associated with hollies.

Hope you find these suggestions useful!

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