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Tuesday - May 18, 2010

From: Highland Village, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Privacy Screening, Shrubs
Title: Evergreen hedge for Dallas-Fort Worth area
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Our red tip photina hedge is slowly succumbing to black spot and we'll need to replace it within the year. (Yes, I now understand red tips come in two varieties: diseased and about to become diseased.) The current hedge is pruned to 50 feet long, 7 feet high and 4 feet deep and the photina did a great job for 10 years. The replacement hedge plant needs to be evergreen and possess a controlled root system since the hedge is planted along a 4 foot high retaining wall. The area receives full sun and we have a drip line running along the base. Suggestions for the DFW area given the restricted depth and root constraints? Thanks in advance,

ANSWER:

Photinia x fraseri (Redtip photinia) is a of hybrid the Japanese Photinia glabra and the Chinese Photinia serrulata and, as such, is not a plant native to North America.  We are very happy that you are considering replacing your hedge with a North American native since the focus and expertise of the Wildflower Center are with plants native to North America.  I'm not exactly sure what you mean by a controlled root system, but the following are not noted for their roots disrupting walls or foundations.  Here are suggestions:

Morella cerifera (wax myrtle)

Ilex vomitoria (yaupon)

Juniperus virginiana (eastern redcedar) can be kept pruned into a hedge

Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush)

Mahonia swaseyi (Texas barberry)

Mahonia trifoliolata (agarita)

Prunus caroliniana (Carolina laurelcherry) and here is more information

You might consider growing vines along the retaining walls instead of shrubbery.   Here are three that are evergreen:

Lonicera sempervirens (trumpet honeysuckle)

Bignonia capreolata (crossvine) is semi-evergreen

Gelsemium sempervirens (evening trumpetflower)

You can visit the Texas-North Central Recommended page for more possibilities for plants for your area.

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