Planting Ideas between Bright and Tight Cherry Laurels

lynn_8989July 5, 2012

I posted this on the Shrubs Forum, but this forum seems more active. I got a great deal on three Bright and Tight Cherry Laurels and put them in this bed, which is 8 ' x 40', about 12' apart in order to screen an ugly fence and my neighbor's play set. I originally was going to preserve this strip for flowers but I only get about 3-4 hours of sun - although it is HOT afternoon sun. The other side has hydrangeas, doing well, bc they get morning sun and afternoon shade due to the house. Suggestions for what else I could put between these Laurels that would be interesting? Would any hydrangea work with this afternoon sun? I do have a sprinkler system.

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What's your vision of how the cherry laurels will be in several years. You'll keep them in shrub form or limb up into tree form? ...Keep them trimmed for height, or allow them to grow natural? It seems that they will either be high maintenance (trimming) or they will dominate the entire area with shade.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 9:05AM
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deviant-deziner(Oh zone)

more tight and bright laurels for consistant solid hedge, for which they are wonderful as and would screen that fence beautifully
This spc. of laurel keeps a nice thick foliage base and it would be a shame to limb the bottom leaves off , only to expose that white fence again.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 11:37AM
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I planned on keeping them in shrub form. I thought a bit of variety would keep it from being too dense looking. I want some screening but not a wall. Does this make sense.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 8:19PM
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These are very vigorous growing plants once established. I fully expect that in the shrub form in the future they'll be encroaching onto the walkway (and beyond) and you'll be trimming their nether reaches from a tall step-ladder... unless you love to prune and do it frequently enough to prevent their attaining the size they will be ever striving for. I like pruning, but keeping them sized to this space would be too much for me.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2012 at 8:46PM
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deviant-deziner(Oh zone)

yes, your perspective makes sense .
When I view your vignette I see a narrow swath of land and tend to lean towards a clean and simple background to play off of a a colorful mid and foreground.
Everyone has a different approach.

I planted Laurel 'tight and bright' 5 years ago as a background hedge and found it to be moderately slow growing in my zone 9 location ( northern california , a mediterraean climate ) The hedge is sheared only once a year and is easily maintained at 24 to 30 inches wide.
We have 'just joey' roses, silver miscanthus and two arborvitae shrubs planted infront of it in a space of about 10 feet wide.

photo taken on the day of planting - laurels are planted directly agains the fence ( during construction )
From Pools

The laurels two years later From Pools

the laurels today , 5 years later
From Pools

I had found the laurels were not growing fast enough to screen the fence so two additional arborviatae plants were planted in 2011 ( total of 4 )

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 12:05AM
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Yes, this is more of what I am looking for. I love miscanthis Morning Light but it gets huge here ( I have two in the sunny border along my driveway). I wonder if there is a variety that only gets 3-4 feet tall? Also, with direct sun for only 3-4 hours in the afternoon, is there a type of rose that would work? I love your pics. Exactly my taste. What is the plant growing in between the red maple and the arborvitae?

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 7:49AM
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Also, I have a small 3-4 foot Sango Kaku that I rescued and it is doing beautifully in it's temporary home in this bed, but it's on the end that gets more shade. Ideas for working it into this plan? I had originally just dumped it in here bc it was half dead from Pike's ( they give me their rejects bc I live next door) since I have great garden soil in this bed. It stayed a stick for awhile but has taken off. Pretty, lime green leaves at the moment. It's placement is similar to where your maple is in your photo.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 8:00AM
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the hakone type grass that is in the planter in DD's third picture might be a lower growing option that would contrast well with the laurel foliage. in my climate it would tolerate 3-4 hours of sun light, but there are similar varieties that are tolerant of more sun than hakone grass. I love the roses in DD's picture also.

My approach would to be focusing on contrasting but complementary foliage types and colors.

Perhaps i missed it, but where are you located? What zone?

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 9:41AM
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I'm in Zone 7, just north of Atlanta. I bought one of those Hakone grasses - I think its called Hakalua (spelling) just because I liked it and its temporarily sitting to the side. I need to concentrate on the rest of the background and mid ground for this border first but the Hakone grass is a nice punch. Maybe in a pot like he has.
I'm thinking I need a different shaped shrub, something less structured, with finer leaves? Would varigated be too much? I have a couple of red twig varigated dogwood shrubs that are pretty. Got them at Pikes for $10. They are currently about 4 feet tall....

    Bookmark   July 6, 2012 at 3:36PM
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rosiew(8 GA)

lynn, the USDA plant hardiness maps show us solidly in Zone 8, not 7B as we were x years ago.

Rosie, in Sugar Hill, GA

    Bookmark   July 8, 2012 at 2:48PM
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rosiew(8 GA)

Just spotted this image and it's probably something you could implement, mounting large planter boxes along the top of your fence.

Here is a link that might be useful: Planters mounted on fence!

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 6:26AM
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