What are some important considerations when selecting a shrub for a hedge?
Home gardeners should carefully consider their landscape needs and the characteristics of the various shrubs. For example, deciduous shrubs drop their leaves in fall and are effective screens mainly during the growing season. Evergreens provide good screening all year. Individuals considering a sheared, formal hedge should realize that they may need to be pruned (sheared) several times a year to remain attractive. In comparison, an informal, natural hedge is relatively low maintenance. Select shrubs that grow to the desired height. Planting a tall-maturing shrub where a short, informal hedge is desired creates unnecessary work. Another important consideration is ornamental characteristics. Some shrubs possess attractive flowers, fruit, or foliage. Finally, make sure the shrub grows well in your area and has no serious insect and disease problems.