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Boxwood & Boxwood Substitutes Compare
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Green Mountain
Green Mountain Boxwood (Buxus x ‘Green Mountain’) is an extremely popular boxwood. It has great cold tolerance and is one of the most naturally resistant to Boxwood Blight. It is deer and rabbit resistant and grows well in full sun to shade. It is hardy in USDA Zones 4-9.
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Schmidt
Schmidt Boxwood (Buxus sempervirens ‘Schmidt’) is a lesser-known boxwood variety but has a desirable tall and narrow growth habit making it great for hedging. It is deer resistant and grows in full sun to partial shade. It is hardy in USDA Zones 5-8.
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Box Honeysuckle
Box Honeysuckle (Lonicera nitida) is lovely hedge in its own right but also makes a great boxwood substitute for areas with Boxwood Blight. The foliage is evergreen and very similar to boxwood. It is deer resistant, takes full sun to full shade, and grows in USDA Zones 6-9.
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Hick's Yew
Hicks Yew (Taxus x media ‘Hicksii’) is the best hedge for deep shade locations, although it also thrives in full sun. This is a naturally narrow plant, so it is good for small spaces. It has evergreen needles and bright red fruits. Hicks Yew is hardy to USDA Zones 5-8.
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Little Simon
Little Simon Arborvitae (Thuja occidentalis ‘Little Simon’) is a dwarf selection of Emerald Green that only reaches 3-4’ tall. It is a great boxwood substitute for colder regions and blight-susceptible areas. It grows best in full sun and is hardy in USDA Zones 3-8.
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Teton Firethorn
Teton Firethorn (Pyracantha ‘Teton’) is an evergreen hedge that boasts billows of white flowers in spring, followed by bright orange fruits that feed birds through winter. Sharp thorns keep deer away. It grows well in full sun to shade and is hardy in USDA Zones 6-9.
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Sizes
Our hedges come in multiple, convenient sizes. Learn about which hedge size option will work best for your project, from our 18-24” tall MiniHedge to our 5-6’ tall InstantHedge. See detailed dimensions for all of our different hedge sizes, including root balls.
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Containers
You have multiple options for the kind of container in which your InstantHedge is shipped. Learn about our standard Biodegradable Cardboard Boxes, as well as the fabric bag and cedar box options. This page will lead you to the best choice for your project.
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Installation
InstantHedge is a unique product and the planting process is very unlike installing a traditional hedge. This page takes you step by step through the easy process of how to plant an InstantHedge. No doubt about it, it’s the fastest way to plant a hedge.
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About Us
Learn about our company’s past and present, and all about how we introduced this revolutionary product to the US market. You can also get a peek at our farm and meet our team of hedge experts who make all the hedge magic happen!
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Distributors
Find out where you can purchase our hedges in your area, whether you are a retail or wholesale buyer. We have exclusive wholesale distributors in some states, and this is where you can connect with them.
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Projects
See real-life examples of our hedges being used in projects all over the country. These photos are provided by our customers and can be used as inspiration for a wide range of uses, from commercial to residential. You can find customer reviews here as well.
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FAQ
Got questions? Of course you do! And chances are, many others have had the same questions. We know that with an unusual product like our hedges there are always many questions. We answer some common questions here on this FAQ page, so it’s a great place to start.
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3-4’, 4-5’, and 5-6’ Field-Grown InstantHedge (available sizes will vary):
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Hedge Spacing

Home> Posts> Care Guides> Hedge Spacing

Hedge Spacing

Emerald Green Arborvitae hedges are shown right after planting at 10” spacing

One of the most common questions we hear about our hedges is this: “How does that work when you space the plants 10 inches apart? Don’t they get too close?”

This is certainly a valid question, especially when you consider that typically recommended spacing when planting a hedge is 2-3’ between plants. It is a question of genetic potential vs environmental and cultural conditions and limitations.

Our growing system was pioneered in the Netherlands at a nursery called QuickHedge where they have been practising this 10” spacing for over 20 years with phenomenal success. Just as you can maintain a Zelkova, trident maple, or Japanese pine in a bonsai pot for 200 years, a hedge that is planted closely together from a young age can be easily maintained at any height desired over time.

Trees that are hundreds of years old can be kept in very small pots as bonsai by pruning repeatedly. The same principle applies to hedges.

When the individual plants are placed closely together in the ground, they share the same root volume and compete for the same water and nutrients. This causes their growth rate to slow over time as the water and nutrients become limited, and it reduces their overall height compared to the same variety planted in an open field. Because they’ve been growing together from a young age, they stay green from edge to edge and on the ends since we prune between the units to allow light to penetrate to the middle.

Emerald Green Arborvitae InstantHedge at the mature size, 6 years after planting with 10-inch spacing. At hedge installation, the units are designed to be planted end-to-end to maintain the 10-inch spacing.

By comparison, if you plant large trees and transplant them too closely together, they’ll shade each other out in the portions which don’t receive sun or which touch each other. You do not have those issues with InstantHedge.

A single specimen of European beech grows very large without pruning, but the old beech hedge shown on the right has been kept much smaller with pruning over the years and is thriving despite being grown close together in a hedge.

Particularly with slower-growing varieties like Yew hedge and European Beech (Fagus Sylvatica), the spacing will cause no issues as they age. With fast-growing types like English Laurel, you can prune out some of the larger limbs if desired to create more space within the canopy. However, this shouldn’t be necessary for at least 10 years after planting.

There are hedges in Europe that are hundreds of years old and still thriving in the same footprint. An InstantHedge will last for decades when maintained properly with regular pruning, water, and nutrition.

By |2020-08-06T22:39:44+00:00September 20th, 2019|Care Guides|