Creating A Hedge? Explore These Alternatives To Boxwood Shrubs


Do you like the idea of including a hedge line in your landscape, but not feel particularly attracted to the standard, box hedges you see bordering all of your neighbors' yards? These perfectly manicured hedges are typically created from a type of shrub known as boxwood. While boxwood is a common choice for hedge rows because it is easy to keep pruned in precise shapes, it is not your only option. Here's a look at three other shrubs that will form nice hedges that stand out from the crowd a little more.

Heavenly Bamboo

Known formally as Nanida domestica, this shrub has looser foliage than boxwood shrubs and is nice for creating a more flowing, less shaped hedge row. It reaches between 3 and 8 feet in height when mature. Known for its white flowers with yellow anthers, it also features attractive red berries.  Heavenly bamboo grows best in medium-moist soils with at least partial sunlight. It is technically evergreen, but will lose its foliage in the winter if temperatures fall below 10 degrees F.

Japanese Eunymus

This shrub is native to Japan, but it has been cultivated across the United States. Its foliage is similar to that of standard boxwoods, but unlike boxwood shrubs, it has beautiful white flowers that appear in the spring time. Japanese eunymus shrubs can reach up to 15 feet in height when mature, but you can keep them smaller with pruning. They are tolerant of a wide range of soil types and will tolerate shade, making them incredibly easy to plant and maintain. Keep in mind that this plant is toxic if eaten in large quantities and will cause vomiting and diarrhea in smaller quantities. Thus, it is probably not the best choice if you have children who will play in your yard.


Yew will grow into a dense, attractive hedge with very little required maintenance. You may want to have it pruned each spring to keep its growth under control, but it does not require the regular pruning demanded by boxwood. Its light green foliage stays vibrant all winter. Yew reaches about 3 to 4 feet in height when mature. It requires medium–moist soils and a neutral pH in order to thrive, but it will tolerate some shade.

Don't let the commonality of boxwood hedges box you into thinking they're your only choice. All of the plants above will also create stunning hedges, each with their own characteristics. Choose the one that sounds best for your landscape, and plant away. You can get a company like Glynn Young's Landscaping & Nursery Center to help you. You'll have a bright and fresh-looking hedge to enjoy in no time.


20 April 2015

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