Hedges can be a disaster zone. We love them for creating attractive boundaries and screening, but without regular maintenance, you could be in for than you bargained for. In Brisbane, with our warm sub-tropical environment, it is very common to see traditional hedge plants overgrown into tall trees.
You may have an overgrown Lily Pilly or Duranta species in your own garden, that was once a simple 1-2 metre high hedge.
When these hedge shrubs growing into small trees, their proximity to each other makes the understorey planting almost non-existent. The canopy becomes too dense to let in light or water, and bare lower branches are exposed. These are difficult, unsightly places to fill.
The height of the over-grown hedges (now small trees) also often blocks out light to the house, with little elbow room between the building and the side boundary.
As family or work commitments increase, time in the garden dedicated to maintaining and hedging these plants becomes a luxury.
My best advice is to plant boundary hedges with appropriate dwarfed cultivars.
There are now many new cultivar species that will grow to the required height, with a minimum of pruning (1-2 times per year). It is vital to choose the right plant for your purpose to reduce maintenance, and future issues when maintenance cannot be kept up. Call me for some ideas on hedge planting on your property.