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Anyone have experience of pleaching? To stop being overlooked?

(12 Posts)
Mrstumbletap Sat 04-Mar-17 17:59:20

Hi all, I was wondering if I could ask you some questions. We have a side of our garden that is overlooked and whilst researching how to create privacy 'pleaching' came up. I had never heard of this but it seems like a good solution.

So what size do you buy the trees? What type? How much would they be?

Would it be hornbeams they seemed to be recommended, they don't look that pretty though.

Shwighty1 Sat 04-Mar-17 23:32:17

You can do our buy pre done other plants but hornbeam are a very good choice. Pleasing does take a fairly long time abs you'd need to go and buy the exact yes you wanted with the right placement of branches. If you were going to do it yourself or if you're not that patient buy some ready done. Lots of big nurseries sell them. You can even buy 'high hedging' so it's not placed as such but is a plant trimmed to a really high point with bare stem then a mini hedge effect up top. Whereas pleaching is more trained along wires or frames.

Itsnothingoriginal Sun 05-Mar-17 09:39:14

We looked into creating a pleached hedge for privacy in our garden but decided against it as does require patience and a higher level of gardening skill than I currently possess!

A raised hedge is another (expensive) option which as pp suggested gives an instant effect but very costly.

In the end we bought some laurels which I'm slowly training into a lollipop shape so as not to lose too much space underneath but provide evergreen privacy above the height of our fence.

shovetheholly Sun 05-Mar-17 17:22:54

Pleaching is quite a skilled thing to do and requires a good framework as well as some knowledge of the technique, BUT you can grow shaped hornbeam that's not 'officially' pleached more easily if you're not desperate for the very precise or narrow shapes.

Mrstumbletap Sun 05-Mar-17 17:56:08

Oh ok, so it may be an idea to just buy hornbeams (are they what you would recommend?) and just trim them so they have a thin stem/trunk?

I'm not bothered about the shape at the bottom, just blocking out the houses you can see across the road, as it will look much prettier.

What tree grows quickly and has year round coverage?

shovetheholly Sun 05-Mar-17 19:02:44

You can prune hornbeams many ways. Someone near me has this wonderful hedge where it is thick at the bottom like a straightforward hornbeam hedge, then at about 5 feet they have stripped out all the side shoots to create an area of airy space punctuated by rustically bendy trunks, with a further layer of hedge floating above. It looks great. They haven't done really formal pleaching - they seem, judging by the effect to have informally woven the branches through and pruned carefully. The effect is thicker and more rustic than some of the very architecturally formal pleached barriers, but is therefore much easier to achieve, and will have the same screening effect.

Hornbeam is great for year-round coverage on clay, beech is better on lighter soils. Both are really quite attractive - there's nothing like the fresh green of their leaves.

Shwighty1 Sun 05-Mar-17 19:35:53

Depending on Size and shape of your garden you could just go for a few elegant trees that could be kept to a reasonable size and would provide privacy without being too intrusive to your own garden. Such as sorbus (rowans), acers (the crimson king one looks good in a small garden), malus, prunus etc.... think about what you want to look at rather than just using it as a view blocker

Mrstumbletap Sun 05-Mar-17 21:58:01

That's a good point and I do love acers, although I have never seen them trimmed at the bottom and coverage up too. I have only seen them with low covering.

We have a 5 foot walk so need it to be clear and then when the wall stops there are nice leaves. So would an acer or sorbus do that?

Shwighty1 Sun 05-Mar-17 22:54:49

There's so many different types of both of those varieties. The Japanese acers can droop branches down bit there are many other species of acer that don't and would work as a standard tree. To name a few beauties Acer crimson king, Acer flamingo, sorbus well it depends what colour berries you'd like there are varieties with red, pink, yellow, white berries..... have a look at a well established tree growers website for inspiration!

shovetheholly Mon 06-Mar-17 07:30:53

A lot here depends on whether you're looking for full-on screening or a plant that will take the eye away from overlooking houses. The two are a little different - people often think they need the first when actually the second is more pleasant and suitable, but it really depends on the site. If you are looking for screening, bear in mind that something that drops its leaves will only screen fully for part of the year.

Mrstumbletap Wed 08-Mar-17 11:26:46

Do you mean like a conifer would block out completely but an acer would be sort of dappled? I suppose yeah just some subtle coverage would be fine, but I would like it to be all year.

On the other side we have a large budlier (not sure if that is how you spell it) which is fantastic as it shoots up covering any houses in the distance, has those beautiful purple flowers and attracts the butterflies. We also have the most gorgeous cherry tree with bright pink flowers it only flowers for a couple of weeks but it's lovely in another corner.

Just on our right hand side there is a 5 foot wall, with nothing apart from houses on view, and I just want to see flowers, trees, and greenery not other people's curtains smile

But all year leaves would be good.

shovetheholly Wed 08-Mar-17 14:50:37

I mean that acers will drop their leaves in winter, so that you will have bare branches. If you need to screen completely, this is not a good idea. If you're looking for something just to lead the eye away from houses, however, it's brilliant because the bark is really beautiful on some varieties, and comes into its own in winter.

A lot of the time when people think they need screening, what they actually need is some distraction for the eye away from something! (Though sometimes some actual screening is needed.

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