Green Beech or Fagus sylvatica is one of the most popular hedging plants, the wavy edged mid green leaves emerge in late spring and become darker and deeper green as they age during the summer. During the autumn months the foliage colour softens to buttery yellow tones before turning to a coppery brown, these leaves are then retained during the winter making Green Beech one of the few deciduous hedging plants that offers year-round privacy.
Beech hedges will grow in any kind of soil type that does not become waterlogged during wet spells, the plants must have good drainage. If this is a problem because your site is poorly drained, we would recommend that you consider Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus) as a worthy substitute. Hornbeam has similar foliage in the summer and retains many of its brown leaves in the winter months and it does very well in wet growing conditions. If your planting site is very wet, you could also take a look at our handy guide to hedges that grow well in wet soil. Another good guide if you aren’t sure is to see if Beech hedges are growing happily in neighbouring gardens.
Beech can be grown in full sun or partial shade and is also a good choice for roadside planting where year-round privacy is desirable as the brown winter foliage is unaffected by the salt spray often experienced on these sites where evergreens may be scorched.
Beech is a versatile hedging plant, it can be maintained at any size from as small as 60cm or so right up to many metres high depending on your requirements.
You can expect an established Beech hedge to have a moderate to fast growth rate, from 30-60cm per year although the rate of growth is likely to be much slower in the first year while the roots get established. When planting we always reccomend adding a little bone meal and Rootgrow mycorrhizal fungi to give the young hedge a head start. You can find out more about planting new hedges in our useful guide to hedge planting (We will also send a printed copy with your order so you have it to hand!)
The best time to trim Beech hedges is in late summer as this seems to encourage the plants to retain their leaves (large Beech grown as individual trees don’t hold onto their leaves!), for a real show garden look you can trim twice a year to produce a hedge with very neat, razor sharp lines. While this may sound like a lot more work you will have far smaller volume of clippings to dispose of.
The spacing of Beech hedging plants is very much a matter of personal choice, your budget and how patient you are. Three plants per metre in a single row will make a good hedge if you are patient, five plants per metre in a double row will produce a dense hedge more quickly or you could fit in as many as 7 per metre in a double row with the smaller sizes (up to 90/120cm) for the fastest results.
For larger sizes of Green Beech hedging plants in pots and root balled stock 2-3 plants per metre in a single row will give good results although you could plant a double row for faster results at 4 per metre (2 in each row 50cm apart) or they will just fit in at 5 per metre as in the diagram but it’s a bit of a squeeze!
Our Beech hedging plants are available in a range of types
Bare root Beech hedging plants are the most economical way to buy a new hedge, because they are grown in the fields we don’t need pots or compost and very little fertiliser or water. These low input plants are great value, we offer generous quantity discounts.
Bare root Green beech hedge plants are a seasonal product that we lift from the fields when they are dormant in winter (November-April) and sent out to you fresh and ready for planting. They should be planted within a few days of recieving them, if this is not possible you can heel them in for a few weeks (or even months in winter) as long as they are planted in their final poistions by the end of March.
Pot grown Beech hedge plants are all grown here at the nursery under the watchful eye of our experienced staff and are available in an unrivalled range of sizes, selected from our growing beds and despatched out to you fresh.
Pot grown Beech have a number of advantages, because there is no root disturbance they may be planted all year round (they are always in season) and they will always establish quickly at any time of year. Often, they will ‘catch up’ bare rooted or root ball plants of a larger size and so are good value for money.
Root ball Green Beech hedge plants are a great choice where more instant impact is needed without being too expensive. Root ball Beech are grown in the soil of our fields for several years to make stronger and bushier plants and lifted with some soil and immediate root system by our specialist machine. The soil around the roots is retained with hessian (you can see in the product photos below) and this should be left when you plant them, it will rot away soon after planting.
Planting density for root ball Beech hedging plants is normally 2-3 plants per metre in a single row although this could be increased to a maximum of 5 per metre in a double row if you squeeze them in carefully, indeed this option can give a good result at a lower cost than our instant hedging products although they will still need to fill out.
Root ball Beech hedging is supplied when dormant in the winter months from October- April which is the correct time for planting, all our plants are grown here on our own nursery and send out to you fresh within a day or two of ordering.
All our root ball Beech plants are delivered to you on a pallet (they are too large and heavy for parcel carriers) and we offer free delivery on orders over £200 (ex VAT).
Our instant Green Beech hedging is a great solution where time and maximum immediate impact are the most important considerations, we have a variety of options starting with the younger trough hedges that have been trimmed at the sides and represent good value for money as they bring significant impact at lower cost. Larger and taller troughs will bring greater privacy from day one and are also great value for money as we grow them all here on the nursery.
For maximum impact take a look at our Green Beech hedge elements, these have been skilfully grown on from younger plants for up to six years on the nursery with a regular programme of trimming (both the roots and tops!) to produce a superior quality of fast establishing, fibrous rooted hedging that offers a real ‘show garden’ look in heights up to 200cm. Hedge elements are always supplied complete with the corresponding length of trickle irrigation hose included in the price.
All our instant Beech hedging options are supplied in convenient 1 metre lengths
You might also like to consider larger sizes of our root ball and pot grown Green beech hedge plants, while these plants may not have been grown and trimmed as an established hedge in the same way, they are still comparatively mature plants and will give a good degree of instant impact at a lower cost.
All our Fagus sylvatica instant hedging products are delivered free for orders over £200 (ex VAT) and we also offer generous quantity discounts for larger orders.
If you have any questions or need advice on any of our Green Beech hedging plants please do give our experienced staff a call on 01580 765600