Best Australian native hedging plants

Australian hedging plants

Hedges are a common way to create a neat and tidy garden design, they can help to create a privacy screen from neighbours, help block out wind or act as a dividing wall in your garden.

Done well hedges not only look great, they’re also the best way to add privacy and serenity to your garden. When choosing the best hedging plants for Australian gardens, it’s wise to spend some time consider the optimal hedging plant for your need. The height you want, what suits your climate, growth rate, and attributes such as flowers, fruit, density, foliage colour and hardiness are all things you should take into consideration when selecting Australian native hedging plants.

To help you out, we’ve created this list of Australian native plants for hedging.

Acmena smithii ‘Cherry Surprise’ – This native Australia hedge is a compact lilly pilly variety. This evergreen has bright red new foliage contrasting against existing  green leaves. Small cream flowers appear in spring and summer. Use as a hedge, screen or topiary. At mature height this lilly pilly can grow between 1-2m in height and 1m wide. It prefers well drained soil and should be ideally positioned in full-sun or part sun.

Westringia fruticosa – Sometimes referred to as native rosemary this bushy, compact native shrub with grey-green foliage can make for a wonderful hedging plant. Foliage is dark green above white underneath. Grows to approx 1.5m Flowers white or mauve for most of the year. Use in tough, exposed sites. Perfect for use as a native hedge in coastal areas in Australia. At mature height Westringia fruticosa can grow between 1-2m in height and 1m wide. It prefers well drained soil and should be ideally positioned in full-sun or part sun.

Syzygium australe (Scrub Cherry) – Australian native tree grown for colourful new growth, beautiful flowers and decorative fruit. A thick evergreen tree with oval, glossy green leaves on pendulous branches. New growth is a copper-brown colour, profuse, fluffy, cream flowers in Summer and Autumn which go on to form clusters of edible, purple to red coloured fruit. A rain forest tree native to eastern Australia. It can grow to a height of up to 35m with a trunk diameter of 60 cm. In cultivation for home gardens, this species is usually a small to medium-sized however and can be used for hedging.

Syzygium paniculatum ‘Magenta Cherry’ –  A rain forest tree, Syzygium paniculatum has a dense and bushy habit with flushes of red new growth. It can grow to 15m tall, but there are selected forms that are smaller and make for a great hedging plant. The fruit is edible, appearing a grape-like clusters mostly magenta pink, but can also be white or purple. A bush tucker fruit it can be used to make tasty jams and sauces.  Grows best when planted in sun to part shade. Regular watering, mulching and fertilising will ensure best growth.

Leptospermum ‘Little Lemon Scents’ – Little Lemon Scents is a wonderful evergreen Australian native hedge.  Displaying a stunning snow-white flowers in Spring the foliage has a delightful, fresh lemon scent when crushed. Little Lemon Scents is far smaller growing and compact plant than its parent, Leptospermum petersonii (Lemon-Scented Tea Tree). It is an ideal specimen shrub for today’s gardens and an excellent Australian hedging plant. It may be pruned and kept to any height. Little Lemon Scents is very adaptable, grows well in a range of soil conditions, tolerates extended wet or dry period and light frosts. Ideal for coastal regions. Little Lemon Scents will grow to a height of 1.5-2m and 1.5m in width.

Leionema ‘Green Screen’ – One of my favourite native Australian shrubs for growing in dry shade or part sun,  Leionema ‘Green Screen’ is a hybrid of L. elatius and L. lamprophyllum, and is a very useful hedging plant. With small foliage, it takes well to regular light pruning. Foliage is a good mid green, glossy and dense. Leionema ‘Green Screen’ will grow to a height of 1.5-2m and 1.5-2m in width.

Westringia fruticosa ‘Seafoam Swell’ –  Is a hardy, small to medium Australian native shrub featuring small shiny leaves and stunning white flowers that are dotted with tiny specks of colour.  Flowers appear in clusters at the end of each branch. This Australian native hedge plant is suitable for low maintenance gardens, exposed sites and coastal gardens. Plant in an area of full sun to semi-shade, with well drained soil.  Westringia fruticosa will tolerate most soil types and is drought and coastal tolerant once established, and can withstand light frost conditions. Prune back yearly to encourage dense foliage growth.  Westringia fruticosa can grow to a height of 1m and a width of 80cm.

Callistemon ‘All Aglow’ –  Is an upright, evergreen shrub with luminous pink new growth, which contrasts beautifully against the deep green mature foliage. Pinky-red bottle brush flowers bloom throughout spring. Grows best in a sunny to partly shaded position with well drained soil and is adaptable to most soil types.  Callistemon ‘All Aglow’ are often used as Australian native screening plants, a feature plant and also grown as pot plants. Tolerating periods of both frost and heat. Lightly prune to maintain shape if required. Callistemon ‘All Aglow’ will grow to a height of 2.5m and a width of 1-1.5m.

Callistemon ‘Great Balls of Fire’ – Is an easy to grow, low maintenance small Australian native hedge plant that is grown for its stunning foliage. The green red lancolate foliage continues to produce intense red new growth throughout the year, emerging atop of the mature green foliage to create a dramatic contrasting effect. It is primarily used as an ornamental hedge, pot plant or as part of native garden displays. Great Balls of Fire is a hardy, drought and heat tolerant variety. Plant in most well drained soils in a full sun position. Prune as required to achieve fresh new growth. It will typically grow to a height of 1.75m and a width of 1.75m.

Melaleuca linariifolia ‘Claret Tops’ – Is dense compact shrub with small leaves and attractive claret coloured new growth. A great foliage plant that has the form of a conifer, with masses of small white flowers in spring as well. A wonderful plant for colour contrasts with other plants, massed plantings, also good in pots and containers. Melaleuca linariifolia ‘Claret Tops’ can be pruned to shape for formal or informal hedging and screening and for topiary and bonsai work. Good in most soils, best in well drained ones with good organic content. More sun will brighten the foliage colours.  It will typically grow to a height of 1-1.2m and a width of 0.6-1m.

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