Are Privet Hedge Poisonous? Find Out Here!

Written By James
Updated May 1, 2022 by James

Are Privet Hedge Poisonous? Find Out Here!

What Is Privet Hedge?

Privet hedge is a type of plant that grows in hedges in temperate climates. The privet hedge is native to Europe and Asia, but it's grown in North America.

Privet hedges are great for privacy, shade, and beauty. They're also straightforward to grow. It would be best if you had a sunny location, some soil, and privet seeds.

There are many different types of privet hedge plants, including:

  • Common privet (Ligustrum vulgare)
  • Blackthorn privet (Prunus spinosa)
  • Hawthorn privet (Crataegus monogyna)

Privets are small shrubs that grow between 6 inches and 2 feet tall, depending on the variety. They're often used as hedges because they grow, are easy to care for, and need little maintenance.

Privets also produce spherical berries that are edible and delicious when cooked. So if you live near a privet hedge, you may be able to harvest some tasty edible berries!

Is It Poisonous?

Privets are known for producing small white flowers in spring and summer. They're also known for being poisonous. The leaves of the privet hedge contain cyanide, which is toxic.

If you've ever eaten a privet leaf, you know it's not pleasant tasting. But did you know that privet hedge contains cyanide?

Cyanide is poisonous, and eating privet leaves can cause severe health problems, including death.

Cyanide poisoning symptoms include:

  • headache
  • dizziness
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • abdominal pain
  • diarrhoea
  • weakness
  • shortness of breath
  • convulsions
  • and coma.

To avoid poisoning yourself, never eat privet leaves. Instead, cut them off the bramble plant and dispose of them properly. If you're interested in learning more about privet hedges, check out my guide here.

How To Grow A Privet Hedge?

If you live in a temperate climate, you can plant privet seeds in early spring. If you live where winter temperatures dip below freezing, wait until late summer or fall to common hedging plant privet seeds. This way, the bare-root plants won't be killed by frost.

Step 1: To grow a privet hedge, dig a hole at least 18 inches deep and twice as wide as the root ball. Then fill the gap with compost and firm plant the privet hedge.

Step 2: Once the privet seeds germinate, you can transplant them into individual pots or small containers. Be careful not to disturb the roots when planting your seedlings.

Step 3: Keep the soil moist and water well throughout the growing season. After flowering, cut down the stems to encourage bushy growth. Once the privets reach 6 feet tall, prune back the foliage to maintain its shape.

Step 4: You can trim off the dead branches when the privet bushes begin to lose their leaves. The remaining foliage should remain healthy and green.

Privet hedges aren't very hardy. They need full sun and regular watering during dry spells. And they need pruning every two years.

How To Prune A Privet Hedge?

Privet hedges are a popular native plant because they're fast-growing, beautiful, and trouble-free. But pruning privets can be tricky, especially when removing dead branches and leaves.

Here are some tips for pruning privet hedge:

1. Remove any dead branches and leaves. Dead branches and leaves can harbour pests and diseases, adding weight to the tree.

2. Cut back any branches that are too close to the trunk. It helps keep the garden trees healthy and strong.

3. Trim off any branches that are too long. Branches should be no longer than three inches.

4. Prune away any weak or damaged branches. These areas are prone to disease and insects.

5. Use a sharp knife to cut through thick bark. The wider the bark, the harder it is to remove.

6. Don't use chemicals to kill pests or weeds. Chemical treatments can damage the roots of the parent plant.

7. Keep the water flowing during dry periods. Watering encourages growth and prevents drought stress.

8. Avoid over-fertilizing. Overfertilization leads to nutrient deficiencies and pest infestations

9. Repot every two years. It lets the garden soil drain better and keeps the root system healthy.

10. Maintain proper air circulation. Pests and diseases thrive in ventilated spaces.

Reasons To Choose Privet hedging

Privet hedges are a great way to protect your garden from wind and rain damage. They're also beautiful and add privacy to your yard.

Here are seven reasons to choose privet hedging over traditional fencing:

  • Privet hedges are much cheaper than conventional fences.
  • Privet hedges grow, making them ideal for small gardens.
  • Privet hedges need no maintenance.
  • Privet hedges block out light, keeping your privet plants happy and healthy.
  • Privet hedges create a natural barrier between your property and the street.
  • Privet hedges can be trimmed and shaped to fit any style.
  • Privet hedges come in various styles and designs, including arbours, trellises, pergolas, and arches.

Final Words

Privet hedge is a poisonous shrub. This shrub is poisonous to dogs, children, and humans. Privet hedge grows along roadsides and in old fields. This wildlife plant is toxic to humans and animals and can cause toxicity that may be fatal.

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My father, and his father before him, and his father; for the past 3 generations, my family have always been into gardening. The green fingers is a gift passed down to me and I thoroughly enjoy it! I also have worked in the manufacturing department for Bosch and DeWalt so I like to think I know a thing or two about tools and such!
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