How Far Apart Should You Plant Laurel Hedge? Find Out Here!

Written By James
Updated July 7, 2021 by James

How Far Apart Should You Plant Laurel Hedge? Find Out Here!

How To Plant Your Laurels The Right Distance Apart

Laurel hedges are one of the most popular types of hedge plants to have in your garden in the UK, this mainly because these Laurel shrubs grow well in the environment of sun and shade and don't need too much interference. 

When planting your Laurel hedging, you might be stuck wondering how far apart to plant your hedging evergreen plants, it is typically recommended to plant three feet apart, however, for thicker Laurel growth, you could stick with two feet apart.

So as you can figure out the best way to plant your Laurel plants for your garden and how to do it, we have composed our top guide below that will cover everything you need to know about growing your evergreen hedging. 

When Do I Plant Laurel Hedging? 

Before you get into planting your Laurel hedging it's a good idea to decide the best time you are going to plant, as this can impact the evergreen hedges growth rate depending on whether or not it is planted in ideal conditions. 

If you are going to plant container-grown plants, they can be planted at any time of the year and still have great growth results, however, for root-balled Laurels bare, it should best be planted around mid-autumn to late autumn as it gives the bare-root time to develop during autumn to spring before the dryer weather comes around. 

When you first plant your bare-root Laurel plants they will need a lot of watering to grow fast and develop, so bear this in mind if you are planting during the summer months.

How To Plant Laurel Hedging

Now we know when to plant your container-grown Laurel and bare-root types, and we also know they should be between two feet and three feet apart, let's explore the best way to plant these hedges for the best growth and look. 

We have listed an easy-to-follow step-by-step list below to help you plant your Laurel hedging for the first time.

Step one - Remove weeds from the area you are planning to plant your Laurel hedge and any other plants, then stake out or chalk where you want your hedge to be so as you can have a visual guide, whether this is curved or straight for your laurel.

Step two - After plotting where your potted Laurel or bare-root Laurel is going to go you can dig a hole that is twice the width of the base of your plant, ensure that these holes are not too big for the plant to fit. 

Step three - After digging you can ease your compact Laurel plants into the hole with soil you have made, make sure that the roots are one to two inches below the surface for best growth. Secure around the base of the plant by patting down the soil.

How Fast Does Laurel Hedging Grow?

After planting your Laurel hedge, you may be wondering how long it will take for your plants to grow to a reasonable height, well, on average, it takes most Laurel hedging a year to grow one of two feet in height, you should trim and prune them around once a year to maintain them too. 

Different types of Laurel do have different growth rates, so we have listed the most common types below and their expected growth rate to help you out. 

  • Common Laurel - Common Laurel is also known as English Laurel and Cherry Laurel, this English Laural growth rate is around 30-60cm per year depending on conditions and if they have plenty of water, these plants are great for hardy conditions.
  • Portuguese Laurel - Portuguese Laurel on the other hand can grow 20/40cm per year in a range of sizes but is less typically used in comparison to common Laurel.
  • Bay Laurel - This Bay laurel produces Bay Laurel leaves which are used in our cooking, they don't do great in very cold temperatures and grow around 15/30cm per year on average.
  • Compact Laurel - Compact Laurel is also typically used in the UK and is very hard-wearing, this root ball plants on average grow around 10/20cm per year.
  • Etna Laurel - The Etna Laurel evergreen plant is one of the more bushy larger Laurel plants, this Laurel Etna type can grow up to 20/40cm a year when taken care of well.
  • Spotted Laurel - Spotted Laurel grows around 20/40cm a year and does not need a lot of sun to grow so works well in shaded garden types. 

Tips For Taking Care Of Your Laurel Hedging 

Taking care of your Laurel hedging is straightforward, however, there are some tips and tricks you can follow to see the best growth out of your hedge, whether you are growing Compact Laurel or Laurel Etna. 

We have listed a few of our top tips below. 

  • Prune your Laurel - Pruning your Laurel hedge can help promote fast growth when you cut back odd branches or brown branches which have died. Pruning should be done according to the speed of growth your hedge has.
  • Make sure you have good soil type and soil surface - Laurel hedging is pretty versatile and can grow easily in a range of soils, however, in very heavy clay soils some compost could help with growth, make sure during soil preparation you removed weeds too.
  • Use a fertiliser - Fertilisers can be used to help your Laurel grow faster, you don't need to use them in excess but fertile soil will help your Laurel grow in poor soil conditions.
  • Water your plants - When you first plant your Laurel hedging you must ensure you are watering it regularly, especially if you have dry soil, every two days is recommended. For normal soil watering once a week might be more suitable, you want to avoid drowning your plant.

Final Words

Overall, it is best to plant your Laurel hedging three feet apart for the average hedge, but if you want a very thick hedge for privacy, planting them two feet together can also be considered. Ensure that you do adequate soil preparation for your Laurel plant and water your soil well when you first plant your hedge. 

For faster-growing Laurel, choose types such as English Laurel or Compact Laurel.

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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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