kate1801
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Creating Hedge Border

Hi! I have grown fruit and vegetables for quite a few years with varying degrees of success however I have only very recently become interested in "proper" gardening and appreciating a nice garden so please be gentle with me!

I fell in love with a shrub I saw in a neighbouring garden and found out they were Cytisus. I have since ordered four varieties of them and was hoping to create a hedge border with them. Firstly, am I right in thinking these would be suitable to do this and secondly, what could I complement them with as I need to split them due to the differing colours and varieties?

I know that I have done this totally the wrong way round as I am now trying to create a garden around a single plant rather than develop a garden using a variety of plants!

Any advice and help would be very much appreciated :)

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Creating Hedge Border

The common variety of cytisus is Scotch broom, but there are other varieties of brooms in the genus also.

To start with you have to tell us where you are located. Gardening is very local and it is hard to say anything that would be generally true all around the globe.

What are the conditions where you will be growing the hedge and plants -- full sun? soil type? etc.

I have to say that I also think Scotch broom is pretty, but all along the west coast of the US it is listed as a noxious weed. It is a European import that got out of control and now is an aggressive invader. The good news is that means it is very hardy and low maintenance. The bad news is that you need to watch it very carefully to be sure it doesn't invade your yard or your neighbors.

It is hard to say anything about what to grow with it without knowing your location/ conditions AND what varieties of broom you will be growing. There are 50 species in the Cytisus genus and they vary widely re size, shape, flower color, etc.
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kate1801
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Re: Creating Hedge Border

Firstly thank you for the quick and detailed reply - who'd have thought there was so much to it!

Ok location - I am in north west England so not the hottest climate in the world and with its fair share of rain throughout the year! The border I am thinking of is quite open to the elements with little shelter. The soil is quite claggy and clay'y however the neighbours have great success in growing hedges of all shapes and sizes.

The Cytisus I have are : Praecox Alba, Zeelander and Broom.

The colours are white, red/yellow and pink.

Thank you for the tip about it running havoc too - something I will keep an eye on!

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Creating Hedge Border

Cytisus is noted for tolerating heavy clay soils. And you are at least close to its native habitat, so it should do well for you while being less aggressive. The trouble is when plants are imported to a different continent, the natural checks on their growth are not present.

OK so next question "what to complement them with"? You mean something to plant in front of them? In that case, the brooms are spiky and twiggy. I would put something low and round/ mounding shape in front of them, like heuchera, candytuft, hardy geranium, sea thrift, artemisia, or some of the dwarf coreopsis or salvia.

Heuchera comes in lots of beautiful foliage colors ( http://www.google.com/images?client=saf ... d=0CBgQsAQ ) which would be nice in front of your green hedge or the Artemsia Silver Mound has silvery white foliage.

If you mean other shrubs to put with it in a mixed hedge border, I would think about something evergreen, since the brooms are deciduous.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

kate1801
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Re: Creating Hedge Border

Once again - many many thanks for taking the time to reply.

I love the idea of Candytuft (again something I have never seen before!) so will be investing in a few of them! Have also taken on board the comments about using evergreen shrubs and plan on a trip to the local garden centre this weekend.

Your help has been very much appreciated - kindest regards :)

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