Madjik_Man
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 7:15 pm
Location: Boulder, CO

Golden Privet hedge trimming

So we, like a lot of others, have a golden privet hedge that is thickly grown in at the top and pretty sparse and "holey" in the middle/bottom.

It is a well established hedge, the woody stalks at the truck are upwards of 2" in diameter.

I've read online (here and elsewhere) that these suckers are pretty tough. E.g. I can shear them down to where it starts getting thin and they'll grow back.

My questions:

Is it too late to prune them back as drastically as 50% this late in the fall?

Should I try to maintain the recommended "A" shape (narrower at the top than the bottom)

Can I simply just use an electric hedge trimmer?

Thanks in advance.

bullthistle
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Joined: Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:26 pm
Location: North Carolina

I doubt the trimmer could cut 2" diameter unless its a chain saw but remember and no its not too late but you'll have to look at it all winter. But what you can do now is to dig a trench on both sides of the hedge and backfill with some fertilizer and manure because more then likely it looks like it does because a lack of nutrients.

Madjik_Man
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Posts: 7
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 7:15 pm
Location: Boulder, CO

bullthistle wrote:I doubt the trimmer could cut 2" diameter unless its a chain saw but remember and no its not too late but you'll have to look at it all winter. But what you can do now is to dig a trench on both sides of the hedge and backfill with some fertilizer and manure because more then likely it looks like it does because a lack of nutrients.
Thanks bullthistle.

With the help of a sawzall (with pruning blade) we just hacked it down about 60%. You're right it looks horrible now but we're hoping in a couple of years with our help it'll fill in nicely. At which point we'd stay on top of it more.

Instead of backfilling a trench with manure and fertilizer, can I just apply a shrub fertilizer come late March or so? This is what I was planning on doing.

Thanks for the help

bullthistle
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Joined: Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:26 pm
Location: North Carolina

I know it's hard work to dig trenches but at least it gets you off the couch. The soil more then likely hasn't had a refresher since you planted the hedge so don't skirt the issue if you want a healthy hedge, fertilizing will help somewhat but a improved soil base will help even more.

Madjik_Man
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Posts: 7
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 7:15 pm
Location: Boulder, CO

bullthistle wrote:I know it's hard work to dig trenches but at least it gets you off the couch. The soil more then likely hasn't had a refresher since you planted the hedge so don't skirt the issue if you want a healthy hedge, fertilizing will help somewhat but a improved soil base will help even more.
The previous owner's planted the hedge probably circa 1985. We've owned the house since 2002. I know since 2002 nothing has been done to the soil.

I guess a trench/soil amendment is in order.

Thank you.

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