© Garden Cottage Nursery, 2017
Planting Plans

Windbreaks and Hedges

Laying Out Plans
A simple layout for planting a coastal hedge with an optional second layer offset to the first, this will give you a thicker hedge quicker, but take twice the number of plants. Plant at least 1m back from your boundary fence to allow clipping of the front face. Most good coastal hedging varieties like Escallonia rubra ‘Crimson Spire’ or Olearia macrodonta ‘Major’ will form a good dense hedge with a planting spacing of 1m centres. Though a bit pricey (a 1x50m roll costs approx. £50) attaching nylon mono-filament windbreak netting to the front of the fence will give the young shrubs a nice bit of extra protection until they are established.
Two effective coastal windbreak layouts: On the left two rows of stout shrubs to protect the young trees that will grow up behind. To the right the trees are straddled by rows of shrubs.  A 2m spacing for the trees is fine when they are young to give extra protection to each other and in their lee and as insurance for losses. In time however, as they get bigger, they will need thinned, likely removing every other one to allow the remaining to grow out broader and less spindly. 
An effective planting method is to dig a hole for each plant individually rather than a trench. Dig a hole, rocks allowing, twice as deep and wide as the plant’s pot. Mix in a small amount of fish, blood and bone (a well balanced organic, i.e. not mineral based, slow release fertiliser) to the spoil pile.
Planting Plants
Now loosen the roots around the edge of the plant’s rootball. Push the spoil backing to the hole with the plant at it’s centre, firming the soil around the shrub, ending up with everything flush with the existing ground level. Digging the hole bigger than the plant’s rootball gives the plant a less compacted and rock filled area to grow into so it will establish quicker. You can top-dress with a piece of old carpet cut into a circle with a slice cut to the centre and placed around the base, this will suppress weeds and reduce water loss over summer. A cheap and easy, if a bit smelly top dressing is to collect some seaweed from the shore, slightly older stuff, preferably from spring tides so some of the salt has washed out, and lay it around the plant 2-3” thick. The top will dry to crust and keep the soil beneath moist in summer and slowly feed the plant as the seaweed rots down.
In exposed coastal gardens trees will find it difficult to establish, always plant them young and provide protection from the wind, but avoid tree tubes as trees are too soft inside the tube and will struggle to emerge from the top. When staking place a stout stake at 45 degrees to the ground, pointing away from the prevailing wind and attached to the tree via a spacer near the base. The rootball should remain steady but the canopy can still flex and toughen. Check stakes at least annually and remove them as soon as no longer needed. 
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Hedges
Windbreaks
Stage 1
Stage 2
Staking
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© Garden Cottage Nursery, 2017
Planting Plans

Windbreaks

and Hedges

Laying Out Plans
A   simple   layout   for   planting   a   coastal   hedge   with   an   optional second   layer   offset   to   the   first,   this   will   give   you   a   thicker   hedge quicker, but take twice the number of plants. Plant    at    least    1m    back    from    your    boundary    fence    to    allow clipping   of   the   front   face.   Most   good   coastal   hedging   varieties like    Escallonia    rubra    ‘Crimson    Spire’    or    Olearia    macrodonta ‘Major’   will   form   a   good   dense   hedge   with   a   planting   spacing   of 1m centres. Though   a   bit   pricey   (1x50m   roll   costs   approx   £50)   attaching nylon   monofilament   windbreak   netting   to   the   front   of   the   fence will   give   the   young   shrubs   a   nice   bit   of   extra   protection   until   they are established.
Two   effective   coastal   windbreak   layouts:   Above,   two   rows   of stout shrubs to protect the young trees that will grow up behind. Below, the trees are straddled by rows of shrubs.
A   2m   spacing   for   the   trees   is   fine   when   they   are   young   to   give extra   protection   to   each   other   and   in   their   lee   and   as   insurance for   losses.   However   in   time,   as   they   get   bigger,   they   will   need thinned,   likely   removing   every   other   one   to   allow   the   remaining to grow broader and less spindly.
An effective planting method is to dig a hole for each plant individually rather than a trench. Dig a hole, rocks allowing, twice as deep and wide as the plant’s pot. Mix in a small amount of fish, blood and bone (a well balanced organic, i.e. not mineral based, slow release fertiliser) to the spoil pile.
Planting Plants
Now loosen the roots around the edge of the plant’s rootball. Push the spoil backing to the hole with the plant at it’s centre, firming the soil around the shrub, ending up with everything flush with the existing ground level. Digging the hole bigger than the plant’s rootball gives the plant a less compacted and rock filled area to grow into so it will establish quicker. You can top-dress with a piece of old carpet cut into a circle with a slice cut to the centre and placed around the base, this will suppress weeds and reduce water loss over summer. A cheap and easy, if a bit smelly top dressing is to collect some seaweed from the shore, slightly older stuff, preferably from spring tides so some of the salt has washed out, and lay it around the plant 2-3” thick. The top will dry to crust and keep the soil beneath moist in summer and slowly feed the plant as the seaweed rots down.
In exposed coastal gardens trees will find it difficult to establish, always plant them young and provide protection from the wind, but avoid tree tubes as trees are too soft inside the tube and struggle to emerge from the top. When   staking   place   a   stout   stake   at   45   degrees   to   the   ground, pointing   away   from   the   prevailing   wind   and   attached   to   the   tree via   a   spacer   near   the   base.   The   rootball   should   remain   steady but   the   canopy   can   still   flex   and   toughen.   Check   stakes   at   least annually and remove them as soon as no longer needed. 
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