The Spotted Laurel (Aucuba Japonica Variegata) is one of the easiest, large, evergreen hedges to grow and is frequently referred to as the Japanese Laurel. Creating the perfect privacy border for anywhere in your garden this hedge is great also for wildlife, providing them with year round shelter.
It has dark green leaves that also have yellow speckles on them, and produces tiny purple flowers in the spring that then turn into a red berry during the autumn. The Royal Horticultural Society have even awarded this hedge with an Award of Garden Merit, meaning it will perform really well in your garden and under the UK growing conditions.
It prefers either full shade or partial sunlight and can happily reside in either a sheltered or exposed site. This type of Laurel can also thrive near other hedges and trees. This hedge enjoys being planted into either loam, chalk or sand soil type that is moist but well draining. It can reach two and half metres high when fully grown and two and half metres wide. However, it does take anywhere between ten and twenty years to reach its optimal height and width.
When pruning your hedge it is best to do so during the late winter or early spring. You can remove damaged or diseased shoots and any shoots growing in a direction you don’t want them to. Once pruned it is always a good idea to mulch and feed your hedge to help give it a boost to its new growth, and to protect its base from any weeds.