Growing Hedges: Gardening Guide

by Australian Flowers

Fast-growing hedges are a great way to add privacy, windbreaks, or a green backdrop to your garden. They can be used to create informal boundaries or noise and light barriers and can even provide homes for wildlife.

Many species of fast-growing hedges are native to Australia, so there is sure to be one that will suit your needs.

Fast Growing Hedges

Whether you’re looking for a fast-growing hedge for privacy or want to add some greenery to your garden, plenty of options are available. From the classic boxwood to the more unusual varieties like Lilly pilly and bottlebrush, there are fast-growing hedges suitable for any garden.

When selecting a fast-growing hedge, it’s essential to consider the ultimate height and width of the plant, as well as its growth habit. Some hedges overgrow but require regular pruning to maintain their shape, while others have a more vigorous growth habit and can become quite large with little maintenance.

History of Hedges 

Hedges have been used in gardens for centuries and are a popular choice for modern gardeners. There are many types of hedges that can be used for various purposes.

Fast-growing hedges were introduced to Australia in the 19th century and quickly became popular. They were initially used as windbreaks but soon became famous for other purposes.

List of Hedges You can Enjoy Planting. 


Hedges are a fast and easy way to create privacy, define property boundaries or add an attractive green border to your garden. But with so many hedges available, it can be hard to know which one is right for you.

Here’s a list of fast-growing hedges that are perfect for Australian gardens:

Lilly Pilly (Syzygium Paniculatum)

Lilly pilly is a fast-growing, evergreen shrub reaching 6 metres in height. It’s perfect for creating privacy screens and windbreaks, and its glossy green leaves make it a beautiful addition to any garden.


Buxus microphylla var. japonica, more commonly known as the Japanese box, is a fast-growing hedge perfect for any garden. This tough little plant can reach up to 3 metres in height and is ideal for topiary work or creating an impenetrable privacy screen.


Murraya Paniculata, or Orange Jessamine, is one of the fast-growing hedges native to Australia. It is a dense, evergreen shrub growing up to 3 metres high and wide. The leaves are dark green and glossy, with clusters of small white flowers that appear in spring and summer.

Photinia x Fraseri

A fast-growing hedge is perfect for privacy screening and topiary. Also known as the Red Robin, it has small, dark green leaves which redden in new growth. It prefers a sunny position and well-drained soil. Photinia can be susceptible to fungal diseases, so ensure you provide good air circulation around the plant.

Westringia Fruticosa

Westringia fruticosa, or native rosemary, is one of the fastest-growing hedges in Australia. It’s a challenging and hardy plant that can tolerate harsh conditions, making it ideal for those looking for a low-maintenance option. Westringia fruticosa can grow up to 3 metres in height and produces small white flowers throughout the year.

Conifer Hedges

Conifer hedges

Conifer hedges are fast-growing and make excellent screens. They are also beautiful, providing year-round interest in the garden with their different coloured leaves, cones and berries.

There are wide varieties of conifers to choose from, so selecting one suitable for your climate and soil type is essential. Once you have chosen the right plant, conifer hedges are relatively easy to care for.


(Buxus sempervirens) is an evergreen shrub or small tree, typically growing to 2–12 m (7–40 ft) tall and wide. Boxwoods are known for their dense, green foliage and ability to be sculpted into nearly any shape. They are popular shrubs in gardens and parks across the world.


Yew, boxwood, and privet are fast-growing shrubs that make ideal hedges. Yew overgrows in full sun or shade and can reach 6 to 8 feet in just a few years. Yew hedge plants are evergreen, so they’ll keep your garden looking green all year round. It is known for being one of the best fast-growing hedges.


Holly hedge (Ilex aquifolium) is one of Australia’s most popular fast-growing hedges. It is an evergreen hedge that can provide year-round privacy and shelter from the sun and wind. Holly hedges are also relatively low maintenance, making them an excellent choice for busy gardeners.


Privet hedges are fast-growing, evergreen shrubs that make excellent privacy screens or hedges. They can grow up to 3 metres tall and 2 metres wide and can be trimmed to any shape or size you like. Privet hedges are thorny and adaptable and will grow in most soil types and climates.


Laurel hedges

Laurel hedges (Prunus laurocerasus) are hedges that can reach up to 6 metres in height. They are a popular choice for gardeners in Australia because they are easy to care for and require little maintenance. This fast-growing plant can easily trim to create a neat, formal hedge.

Laurel hedges are evergreen and have dark green, glossy leaves. They are also very tolerant of drought and frost, making them a low-maintenance option for gardeners in all parts of Australia.


Maple hedges are fast-growing hedges that can provide privacy and noise reduction in your garden. They are also drought tolerant and can tolerate full sun or partial shade. This plant symbolizes balance and harmony.


Lilac bushes can get quite large, so a privet is a good option if you’re looking for a fast-growing hedge that won’t take over your garden. You can be trimmed to any shape you like, and they make a great privacy screen. This is a great plant when you want fast growth but don’t want to sacrifice aesthetics.


Hawthorn hedges are also great for attracting birds to the garden. Hawthorn usually flowers in May and June, with masses of small white flowers that are a real treat for the eyes. The berries that follow are an essential food source for birds over winter. If you’re looking for fast-growing hedges, Hawthorn is an excellent choice as it can grow up to 1 metre per year.


Dogwood came from a word meaning ‘dye’, as the twigs were used to make a blue-black dye. The Latin name for dogwood is Cornus, and it is part of the family Cornaceae. There are about 60 species of dogwood, most native to north temperate regions.

Dogwoods have simple opposite leaves, and their flowers are borne in clusters. The flowers are small and insignificant, but the colourful bracts make up for it. Dogwoods are also known for their bright red fruits, which are popular with birds.

Crabapple (Malus sylvestris)

Crabapple trees are fast-growing, deciduous trees that can reach 20 feet (6 m). They have a round or oval canopy and produce small, yellow-green flowers in the spring. The fruits of the crabapple tree are small, red apples that ripen in the fall.

Crabapple trees are native to Europe, Asia, and North America. They have been introduced to Australia and New Zealand, and are now considered invasive species.



A spruce hedge is perfect for your home if you’re looking for fast growth and privacy. This plant is an excellent choice for Australian gardens because it can handle heat and cold weather conditions. Did you know that spruce is also one of the most popular choices for Christmas trees?

Spruce hates being moved, so choose your planting site carefully. They like full sun or partial shade and well-drained soil with a neutral to acid pH. You can grow spruce from seed, but buying young plants from a nursery is easier.

Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens fastigiata)

Cypress hedge (Cupressus sempervirens fastigiata) is a fast-growing, evergreen hedge that can reach heights of up to 8 metres. It is a popular choice for hedging because it is hardy, drought-tolerant and has low maintenance requirements. This plant can usually be found in Mediterranean countries.

Did you know that the cypress hedge is also the Italian cypress? This cypress species is often used in topiary, as it can be easily shaped into cones or columns.

Uses and Benefits

The benefits of the hedge that you haven’t known before

  • Hedges can provide privacy and security for your home.
  • They can also act as windbreaks, helping to protect your garden from strong winds.
  • Hedges can also help to reduce noise pollution.
  • Fast-growing hedges can be a great way to add instant greenery to your landscape.
  • They can also help to increase the value of your property.

When to Plant Hedges

The best time to plant fast-growing hedges in Australia is during the cool weather of autumn or spring. This allows the roots to establish before the hot weather arrives. You can plant hedges anytime if you live in an area with very mild winters.

How to Plant Hedges

Dig a trench twice as wide as the root ball when planting fast-growing hedges. The trench should be shallow enough so that the top of the root ball is level with the surrounding soil. Place the hedge on the track and backfill it with soil. Water well to help settle the soil around the roots.

How to Care for Hedges

Fast-growing hedges will need regular pruning to keep them under control. The best time to prune is in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Start by trimming the sides of the hedge slightly narrower than the top. This will help encourage new growth and make the hedge fuller. Cut the top of the hedge to create a flat or slightly curved top. Regular pruning will keep your fast-growing hedge looking neat.


There are a variety of fast-growing hedges that can be grown in Australia. Soil is critical for the success of these plants. Different fences will have additional soil requirements, so choosing the right hedge for your garden is essential.

Most fast-growing hedges need well-drained soil. This means that the earth should not be too wet or too dry. If the soil is too moist, the hedge’s roots will rot. If the soil is too dry, the fence will not be able to get the moisture it needs to grow.


It’s sunlight that fuels a plant’s growth. The more sunlight a fast-growing hedge receives, the more it will grow. If you want the best results, choose a location for your wall that gets plenty of suns.


In Australia, the climate varies from temperate to tropical, so choosing a hedge that will thrive in your particular climate zone is essential. If you live in an area with a hot, dry climate, then a fast-growing wall like the Lilly Pilly or the Golden Wattle is a good choice. Consider a slower-growing hedge like the English Box or the Holly if you live in cooler weather.


They should be planted close together to touch each other when fully grown. This will create a dense hedge that will be more effective at providing privacy or windbreaks. Also, make sure to plant the tallest plants in the middle and the shorter ones at the sides. This will ensure that your hedge is evenly dense all around.

When planting fast-growing hedges, it’s important to space them correctly. They should be planted close together to touch each other when fully grown. This will create a dense wall.


Fast-growing hedges can become a bit unruly if they’re not pruned regularly. Pruning will encourage new growth, making your fence look lush and full.

Here are some tips on how to prune fast-growing hedges:

  • Start trimming the hedge’s sides using sharp shears or a trimmer.
  • trim the top of the hedge, creating an excellent, even shape.
  • If you notice any dead or damaged branches, remove these as well.
  • Finally, give the hedge a good tidy-up by removing loose leaves or debris.
  • Pruning fast-growing hedges is a simple way to keep them looking neat. By following these tips, you can ensure your hedge stays healthy and grows evenly.

Frost Sensitive

Some fast-growing hedges are not frosted tolerant, so if you live in an area with cold winters, choosing a variety that can withstand the chilly temperatures is essential. When selecting a fast-growing hedge for your garden, check the plant’s labels or ask your local nursery for guidance on which varieties are best suited to your climate.

Pests and diseases

As with any plant, fast-growing hedges can be susceptible to pests and diseases. To keep your fence healthy, it’s essential to regularly check for signs of problems and take action if necessary. Regular pruning will also help to keep your hedge looking its best.

Possible Pest and Disease Problems

  •  Aphids
  •  Caterpillars
  • Powdery mildew
  • Rusts
  • Scale insects

Other Tips

  • If you’re looking for fast-growing hedges, consider planting multiple species together. This will create a more diverse border that can better withstand pests and diseases.
  •  When pruning fast-growing hedges, be sure to prune early and often. This will encourage new growth and prevent the wall from becoming overgrown.
  •  Mulching fast-growing hedges will help to retain moisture and keep the roots cool in summer. This will promote healthy growth and prevent the hedge from drying out.
  • Fertilizing fast-growing hedges will help to promote lush, green growth. Be sure to use a fertilizer designed explicitly for fast-growing plants.

Frequently Asked Questions about Growing Hedges 

What is the fastest-growing hedge in Australia?

The boxthorn (Lycium Chinese) is the fastest-growing hedge in Australia, which can grow up to 2 metres tall in just one season. It has spiny branches with small, green leaves and produces red berries that are poisonous to humans but enjoyed by birds. Boxthorn hedges provide shelter and food for wildlife and are a valuable source of nectar for bees. They can be used as a natural fence or windbreak and are drought-tolerant.

How do you make hedges grow quickly?

There are a few things you can do. One is to fertilize with a high-nitrogen fertilizer such as 10-20-10. Another is to water deeply and infrequently. And finally, prune the hedge regularly to encourage dense growth.

What is the best plant to make a hedge?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as the best plant to make a hedge will vary depending on the climate and soil type of the location. However, some popular plants used for borders include privet, boxwood, yew, and holly.
Extra details to consider when choosing a plant for a hedge include the size and shape of the plant, as well as how fast it grows. It’s essential to select a plant that will grow to be the desired size and shape and will also grow quickly enough to fill in the gap between planted plants relatively quickly.

What hedge is best for a garden?

Many different types of hedges can be used in a garden, and the best fence for a garden will depend on the specific needs of the gardener. For example, if privacy is a priority, tall hedge-like privet or cypress would be a good choice. A hedge of shrubs like azaleas or rhododendron will be ideal if the shade is needed.
Some other factors to consider when choosing a hedge include the climate and soil type in your area, as well as the size and shape of the garden. It’s also important to remember that borders need regular maintenance to keep them looking their best, so be sure to choose one that is easy to care for.

How long does a hedge take to establish?

It depends on the hedge species, but generally, it will take around two to three years for a wall to establish fully.
While many think of hedges as solely ornamental plants, they can play an essential role in protecting your property from wind and pests. It’s therefore important to make sure that you choose the correct species of hedge for your needs and give it plenty of time to grow before relying on it for security.

What is the easiest hedge to maintain?

One of the easiest hedges to manage is privet. It can be trimmed with hedge shears or a lawnmower and takes well to shaping. It can also be left untrimmed and will grow into a large shrub.

How fast does Lilly Pilly grow?

Lilly Pillies proliferate, often reaching about 2 metres high in their first year. It can grow even taller than that in subsequent years. The leaves are deep green and glossy, and the fruit is round and ranges from pale pink to dark red.

What is a fast-growing plant for screening?

Many fast-growing plants, such as bamboo, willow, and grape vines, can be used for screening. A bamboo is an excellent option because it proliferates and can easily be transplanted. Willow tree saplings increase and are easy to care for, making them a good choice for areas with little sunlight. Grape vines are a good option for screening large sizes because they grow tall and cover a lot of ground.
Lilly Pillies proliferate, often reaching about 2 metres high in their first year. It can grow even taller than that in subsequent years. The leaves are deep green and glossy, and the fruit is round and ranges from pale pink to dark red.

How fast does murraya grow?

Murraya grows relatively quickly and can be expected to reach around 10-15 feet in a few years. It prefers full sun but can tolerate light shade, making it a versatile landscape plant. With regular pruning, it can be kept at a more manageable size.
The leaves are often used in Indian cuisine known as curry leaves. The leaves have a strong curry flavour and are used to season meat, fish, and vegetarian dishes. Murraya is also sometimes used as a medicinal herb. It effectively treats diabetes, high cholesterol, and other health conditions.

What is the fastest-growing flowering hedge?

The fastest-growing flowering hedge would likely be something like a Lonicera nitida or a Lonicera pileata, which can grow up to 1 foot per year. However, there are many different flowering hedges, depending on the specific variety you are looking for. If you’re looking for something that is both fast-growing and drought-tolerant, then something like a Pyracantha coccinea would be a good option.

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