How to Grow Hedges From Seed

Updated February 21, 2017

Hedges are shrubs that are planted close together to form a barrier around a section of property or to enhance the landscape. Because many shrub types are slow growing, a hedge is typically planted from existing small shrubs. If you are not in a hurry to have a full-grown hedge, you can plant the shrubs from seed. Shrub seeds will germinate between 30 and 190 days depending on variety, but it will take years before they grow big enough to form a hedge.

Lay a piece of 200-grit sandpaper on a flat surface with the rough side facing upward, Place five to six shrub seeds on top of it and cover them with another piece of sandpaper with the rough side facing downward.

Hold the bottom piece of sandpaper still with your hand while you slide the top piece back-and-forth approximately five times. This scarifies the seed coats and allows them to germinate.

Till up the area where you want to plant the hedge using a garden tiller. Set the blade depth to at least 5 or 6 inches and push it over the planting site.

Spread a balanced, granular fertiliser, such as 10-1-10, onto the surface of the area at a rate of 0.454kg. for every 64 feet of hedge. Run the tiller over the area again to work the fertiliser into the soil.

Create a 1-inch-deep hole in the prepared area and insert one shrub seed into it. Cover the seed with soil until the hole is completely filled.

Plant additional shrub seeds in this same manner in straight line. Use the spacing requirements specified on the seed package. In general, to form a hedge the shrubs should be planted approximately 3 to 5 feet apart, depending on the variety.

Water the soil well after planting until it is completely moist but not soggy. Thereafter, water twice per week for the first month and then once per month after that.


According to the Pennsylvania-based Donnan Landscape Services, some of the more popular evergreen hedge shrubs planted in the U.S. are boxwood, false cypress, arbor vitae, holly and juniper.

Things You'll Need

  • 200-grit sandpaper
  • Shrub seeds
  • Garden tiller
  • 10-10-10 granular fertiliser
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About the Author

Kimberly Johnson is a freelance writer whose articles have appeared in various online publications including eHow, Suite101 and Examiner. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and began writing professionally in 2001.