Out with the unending lines of thuja! These days, planting mixed hedges is all the fad. In such a hedge, evergreen leafage, colorful blooms and species that pollinator insects find useful grow next to each other. The hedge then becomes a perpetually changing landscape that every season paints in different hues. Here are 12 great shrubs for a mixed hedge!
4 shrubs with evergreen foliage
- Height: 2 to 20 feet for hedge varieties (there are also a number of low-growing creeping varieties).
- Foliage: evergreen, dense, shiny deep green.
- Blooming: simple pink or white flowers from May to July.
- Special feature: hardy down to -13°F (-25°C), with uncountable tiny red berries that decorate the tree from the end of Summer to the end of Fall.
- Learn more about cotoneaster
- Height: 6 to 15 feet (2 to 5 meters)
- Foliage: fleshy, oval, deep green evergreen leaves.
- Blooming: small cream-yellow flowers from April to June.
- Feature: fragrant leaves that are great for marinades and grilling. Watch out, because two other laurels – oleander and cherry laurel – are toxic!
- Learn more about bay laurel
- Height: 1½ to 10 feet (0.5 to 5 m)
- Foliage: pointy-tipped oval evergreen leaves that are green or red.
- Blooming: white, pink or purple bell-shaped flowers between February and May.
- Feature: A shrub with a compact bearing that will fill in for the too-common photinia with its red leaves.
- Learn more about Japanese andromeda
Choisya ternata ‘Aztec Pearl’:
- Height: 3 to 15 feet (1 to 5 meters)
- Foliage: evergreen shrub that has 5 very thin leaflets per leaf, a big change compared to the type species that has rounded leaflets.
- Blooming: sphere of pale pink flowers in May-June.
- Feature: graphic, rare leafage and fragrant blooms.
- Learn more about the Aztec Pearl choisya
4 Shrubs for a flowered mixed hedge
- Height: 5 feet (1.50 m)
- Foliage: deciduous, long veined leaves that are average green in color.
- Blooming: pink or white star-shaped flowers form clusters from May to June.
- Feature: Abundant blooming with a fragrant scent.
- Learn more about deutzia
- Height: 3 to 10 feet (1 to 3 m) for non-climbing varieties.
- Foliage: deciduous, each serrated leaf measures around 4 to 12 inches (10 to 30 cm).
- Blooming: large flower clusters, for which the soil type dictates the color: blue if it’s acidic, and purple, pink or red for alkaline and chalky soil. Long-lasting blooms, from June to September.
- Feature: flower clusters come in various shapes, it’s a plant that evokes English gardens and small village gardens in French Brittany.
- Learn more about hydrangea
- Height: 3 to 4 feet (1 to 1.2 meters)
- Foliage: deciduous, soft green or blue-hued leaves with 3 to 7 leaflets.
- Blooming: many 5-petaled simple flowers, yellow for the type species but white, pink, red or orange for the various cultivars.
- Feature: compact bearing, ideal for hedges in a small garden.
- Learn more about shrubby cinquefoil
- Height: 5 to 15 feet (1.50 m to 5 m)
- Foliage: small, narrow, serrated alternate leaves that are a luminous green hue. Deciduous foliage.
- Blooming: it will rain tiny yellow pompoms from April to June, and then again, albeit less, from August to October.
- Feature: hardy down to -13°F (-25°C), resists urban pollution very well.
- Learn more about kerria
4 Melliferous shrubs
- Height: 3 to 6 feet (1 to 2 m)
- Foliage: small deciduous leaves with a gray underside.
- Blooming: clusters of white flowers in July and August. Very ornamental round white or pink berries appear after the flowers.
- Feature: Blooming is loved by honeybees who come visit it often.
- Learn more about snowberry
- Height: 2 to 30 feet (0.60m to 10m)
- Foliage: opposed normal green deciduous leaves that have fuzz on their underside.
- Blooming: long, fragrant inflorescences that are usually purple.
- Feature: very appealing fragrant nectar that insects love, especially butterflies, which gave it its “butterfly tree” nickname.
- Learn more about buddleia
- Height: 3 to 15 feet (1 to 5 m)
- Foliage: opposed oblong leaves, dark green in color, evergreen.
- Blooming: small, white flowers clustered into flattish corymbs from November to April.
- Feature: gives food early on in the year to pollinators of all sorts.
- Learn more about laurestine
Cornus mas (Cornelian cherry dogwood):
- Height: 9 to 20 feet (3 to 7m)
- Foliage: veined and textured leaves that have fuzz on their backside.
- Blooming: bouquets of yellow flowers in February-March, before any leaves appear.
- Feature: excellent melliferous and nectar-rich plant.
- Learn more about cornus
Mixed hedge with kerria by foooomio ☆ under © CC BY 2.0
Cotoneaster by Sheila ☆ under Public Domain
Bay laurel with Pop’s bird by Dana L. Brown ☆ under © CC BY-SA 2.0
Japanese andromeda by Stephen James McWilliam ★ under © CC BY 4.0
Aztec Pearl by Peter Stevens ★ under © CC BY 2.0
Deutzia blooming by Fran Dekkers ★ under Pixabay license
Hydrangea by Nabin Mewahang ★ under Pixabay license
Cinquefoil by Paul and Jill ★ under © CC BY 2.0
Kerria by Dhyan Wisselo ★ under Pixabay license
Snowberry by megachile ★ under Public Domain
Buddleia by David Thomas ★ under Pixabay license
Laurestine blooms by Peter de Lange ☆ under Public Domain
Cornus mas by Nikolett Emmert ★ under Pixabay license