Popular alternatives to laurel evergreen hedges this winter

Evergreen hedges are a popular choice in many gardens. The resilience and beauty of this foliage brings a number of benefits to your green spaces. Its dense formation and characteristics not only provide a natural all year round border, it also acts as protection against wind, dust and noise pollution, and its often dense branch structure can create an effective deterrent and discourage unwanted intruders.

There are many popular examples of evergreen hedges including Laurel which many people automatically think of when planting evergreen hedging. Laurel comes in many varieties and is a useful hedging plant that grows quickly and flourishes in most conditions. It also provides a space for wildlife to enjoy all year round. However, there are several alternatives to laurel evergreen hedges that still provide a beautiful option for many gardens including:

Leylandii evergreen hedges

This extremely fast growing hedging plant is an affordable yet sometimes controversial choice. It is also known as conifer hedging and provides a dark evergreen border that some neighbours might not like if it grows too tall! If kept in check with regular trimming however, Leylandii offers several benefits for your garden. It is tolerant to harsh winds and cold snaps and it filters particulates from passing traffic. It also provides a fantastic option for improved privacy and can look very grand.

Pleached trees

For owners of smaller or sectioned gardens who still want to enjoy the benefits of a natural border, pleached trees are a great idea. This style of hedge or screening provides a natural barrier with tall stems and beautiful foliage. Pleached trees look elegant and can also provide increased privacy above walls or fences without the need for any building work. They are a popular choice on new build estates where homeowners need to make their homes and gardens more private, quickly.

Beech hedges

This hardy alternative hedging is also a popular option. As beech hedges are native to Britain, they are able to flourish in a variety of soil conditions and temperatures. However, this type of hedge does not grow as fast as Leylandii and Laurel and it is not an evergreen hedge. Yet, once it is established, it will start to grow more quickly after the first few years. Even in the winter months without leaves, beech displays an attractive golden brown shade. It can also be easily shaped for a neat appearance and grows beautifully in either direct sunlight or partial shade.


If you don’t need a tall hedge, lavender is also a great choice. It’s evergreen, it looks lovely and smells wonderful. It can also bring life to your garden and your cooking! Lavender attracts bees, butterflies and insects – which in turn attracts wild birds. Fresh and dried lavender flowers and leaves can be used in your cooking and the dried buds can be used in potpourri or sachets to fragrance clothes, linen and bedding. However, take a little care when deciding where to plant lavender – the plants do not like being waterlogged.

If you’re looking to revamp your exterior spaces and would like advice on planting any type of hedge, contact Hedge Xpress on 01993 850979. We’ll offer our expert tips and help on finding the perfect hedging for your garden size, aspect and soil type.

Our popular alternatives to laurel evergreen hedges