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Lawn & Garden

Plant of the Week: Privet

Common privet “ligustrum vulgare” is a perfect shrub for a hedge, a division between properties and a privacy barrier.

Privet is common in the northeast, privet hedge delineated yards and driveways throughout the Boston area. I remember, as a kid, the sound of the electric hedge trimmers buzzing in the neighborhood all the time; the smooth, evenness of the hedges is a total art and it took quite a bit of time to trim the hedges just right, some neighbors used ladders to accomplish the task.

Privet is fast growing, it is semi-evergreen in this region, it holds its leaves until the dead of the winter and then starts very early spring with new growth. The branching is dense, so even when it has defoliated it still creates a great barrier. Privet is salt tolerant it preforms great by the ocean and also on a city street, where the salt trucks frequent during the cold, snowy months.

Privet can grow 4-15 feet tall, and 4-8 feet wide, if allowed to flower they have small clusters of fragment white blooms that look beautiful against the dense, deep-dark-green of the privet leaves.Privet is not fussy about soil, it will grow in sandy or dense soil structure, and will grow in the sun or the shade.

I recently saw massive privet hedges in Newport, Rhode Island. The hedges were borders at the great mansions that dot the coastline on the cliff walk in Newport, the towering shrubs were very impressive!

If you are thinking of planting a living wall, or a thriving fence consider privet, stop by your local Home Depot, speak with the garden specialist for the availability of privet in your region.    Maureen 

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Posted 2016-09-27T17:40:24+0000  by Maureen_HD_BOS Maureen_HD_BOS
Yes, privet is also very common here in the Midwest.

If given sunshine, it is one of the most hardy plants you could own.
Dry weather or wet, fertilizer or not, sandy soil or clay, they just don't seem to care.

I do have to prune mine twice as often as my evergreen shrubs though.
Just a great privacy hedge!


Posted 2016-09-27T19:42:36+0000  by Chris_HD_CHI
Image result for eisenhower summer home newport ri

Greetings Chris,

The top image of my post shows the privet hedge that surrounds the historic Eisenhower Summer White House, in Newport, RI. The above picture is a current photo of the mansard beauty; when President Eisenhower summered here the privet hedge, I was told, was so high you could not see the house at all.

Another great feature of the privet is that it can be wacked, a drastic cut back, and it will come back stronger!  This beautiful house can be seen from far and wide now because the privet is all short and manicured at about 3 feet, the same bushes once stood at 18 feet high! Great shrub... the privet!

Posted 2016-09-29T17:14:10+0000  by Maureen_HD_BOS
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