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Planting Guidelines

Hedge Nursery are the exclusive suppliers of RHS bare root hedging plants, grown in the UK from UK provenance seed. Our nurserymen work the soil with passion and enthusiasm to produce nature’s finest offerings in a crafted, caring, considered way. They respect and nurture the seed with a genuine, green-fingered devotion. 

To maintain their quality, you don't need to have the same expertise as our seasoned nurserymen. These guidelines are intended to help you easily plant and establish your new hedge, but should be used as a general guide only. 


Storage 

Our bare root plants have been freshly uplifted and dispatched to you within 24 hours, but don't worry if you can't plant your bare root plants immediately upon receiving them. The best way to store them is to heel them into some compost either in the ground, pots or bags. This keeps the roots protected. If you're concerned about the root washes coming off, plant them with the compost to ensure you don't lose any.

Try to get your plants planted within a week. If you’re unable to heel them in, store in a cool, dry, dark place, ensuring they won't be exposed to frost or wind. Keep them sealed in their bags, which should be removed only when you are about to plant the trees. The plants should retain their moisture and do not need soaking in a bucket. Do keep a check on them and if you are concerned about the roots being very dry prior to planting, water them well with a hose once they have been planted in the soil. 

Bare root plants cannot be planted when the soil is frozen or during freezing temperatures. Once their roots are frozen, plants can be easily damaged as their roots break so easily. It is best not to move bare root plants at all during these conditions. Instead, leave them in a sheltered spot outside (such as a cool garage), keeping the roots wrapped. Plant them once the soil is soft enough to dig again. 


Preparing the ground 

Ensure weeds have been removed from the planting area and cut back any existing vegetation to reduce competition for nutrients and water. If planting into heavy clay you may wish to add some rough compost to provide extra drainage. 


Spacing

Spacing will depend on the effect you want to create. Most popular hedging plants like Crataegus monogyna (Hawthorn) or Fagus sylvatica (Beech) can be planted with three to four per metre. If you want a very dense hedge, shrubs and trees are normally planted in a zig-zag formation of five to seven plants per metre. You will need to allow the plants time to establish and form a hedge, and to allow their branches to become entwined to form a dense screen. It is worthwhile potting up any extra plants as gap fillers should you require them.


Planting

Protect your plants by only removing them from their bags immediately before planting.

There should be a slight discoloration on the trunk of the tree where the soil line is still visible, determining how deeply the tree was planted before being uprooted and sent to you. Dig the hole to the same depth as this mark. Roughly, this should be a thumb’s width above where the root crown begins.

Gently arrange the roots or shake the plant to ensure the roots are spread out and facing downwards, then place into the hole.

Loosely back fill the hole with soil, mixed in with compost if you require. Ensure the soil around the plants is room enough to support the roots without suffocating them. For example,you can do this by gently treading down around the planting area. The soil should not be so compacted that the roots have no space to grow.

Attaching the plants to a stake will ensure the roots are supported and anchored as the tree establishes. For a tree under three years old, a spiral guard is an easy way of deterring grazers. Simply push a 90cm cane deeply into the soil next to the newly planted tree, and wrap the guard around both the tree’s trunk and the cane. Try to do this immediately after planting.


Establishment and Aftercare

Bare root plants are a fantastic way to get a very cost-effective hedge planted. They are cheap to buy and easy to maintain. Our dedicated, experienced nurserymen are really proud of our plants and hope you will be, too. That’s why they nurture our plants with an unerring level of care and attention.

Naturally, not all your bare root plants can be expected to survive and a small amount of natural losses do occur: sometimes up to 5%.  A degree of patience is required before the plant will establish and begin to grown again. Regrowth and establishment can take some months to notice. Once underway, the hedge will grow superbly given the right conditions and maintenance. You can really help your plants to establish by ensuring the area around them is kept weed free to a diameter of half a metre.

Watering will be required for at least two years after planting - during dry spells or when the soil is very dry. Shortly after planting and then every year, you can mulch and feed your plants to provide nutrients and a better growing environment.

If you're looking for incredible prices on everything you need to maintain your plants, then take a look at our sister site Water Irrigation. Click here to view our large range of irrigation products, perfect for keeping your plants well watered and thriving.



Why are Hedge Nursery’s bare root plants different?

Hedge Nursery are the exclusive grower of RHS hedging plants, grown in 220 acres of rich Herefordshire soil. We take exceptional care and attention to develop the finest, hand-picked products from the greenest of fingers. As they are dispatched directly from the fields, rather than through a nursery, our plants are much fresher than imported or stored plants. Our RHS hedging plants are grown through low input horticultural methods. Water is harvested in the winter for use in the summer. No heat or poly tunnels are used in the growing process, which means your plants are hardened off as nature intended them to be.

At Hedge Nursery, we believe in growing together.

If you have any problems or queries about your plants please contact us as soon as possible so that we can advise you appropriately.