When do you fertilize hornbeam?

What do you fertilize the hornbeam bushes with and when do you give fertilizer?

Answer: Avenbok, Carpinus betulus, you fertilize in the spring when the trees are in the "starting pits". Give well-matured compost soil, cow or horse manure that you mulch into the soil around the trees. Feel free to supplement with bone meal, algomine or garden lime a few weeks after the first fertilizer application, hornbeam thrives in calcareous soil. Be sure to water in dry weather.

A free-growing hedge consists of plants that grow according to their natural way of growing. Different types of spirea are often used for this type of hedge, but in principle any ornamental shrub can be used. If you have a free-growing hedge, the hedge trimmer generally consists of either:

  • thinning when rice branches are removed from below the ground or
  • rejuvenation when the hedge is cut down completely to about 10 cm above the ground.

Examples of shrubs that can withstand rejuvenation pruning from the base are spirea, privet, try and hedgehog berries. A certain amount of care can work, but in principle the free-growing hedge should have its natural way of growing. Therefore, for example, do not cut it in half and try to shape it. It will result in branches dying in and it will quickly become shaggy and dull.

A dense and beautiful hedge with hornbeam

In the Nordic countries, hornbeam is relatively unusual in nature. As a tree, in wild form, it grows only in the southernmost parts of our country. On the other hand, it is a plant that in the form of shrubs and hedges is very common in Swedish gardens or parks. Hornbeam is planted this way due to its ability to withstand most of the conditions. It is not particularly demanding to take care of and once it has established itself on its cultivation site, you can count on having a showy plant for many years to come.

Its resistance to different soils and different places goes hand in hand with its ability to withstand hard pruning, which makes hornbeam a perfect plant to plant as a shaped hedge or as shaped solitaires. This tree can grow up to 25 meters high, but the normal is about ten meters.

The leaves - distinctive features with privacy-protective properties

When conditions are ideal, hornbeam also grows rapidly, over 50 centimeters in a year. The very appearance of the hornbeam is characteristic. Its main distinguishing feature is the leaves, which grow on the spring edge and become beautifully light green. These light green leaves grow in a very dense way, which is of course one of the big reasons why hornbeam is used as a hedge, as they provide good privacy.

The leaves also have a very special shape, ovate with a pointed and sawn edge. The leaves are also strongly pleated on the top, which creates the hornbeam's unique appearance. These leaves will turn yellow as autumn approaches, and then turn reddish brown. The flowers on a hornbeam are small and barely visible and bloom between May and June.

In the wild, the hornbeam grows mainly in the southern parts, but it is perfectly possible to plant it all over the country - especially as a hedge plant because it is especially hardy for fairly tough pruning. Avenbok, which is a type of birch plant and gives leaves afterwards, is a very easy-to-plant plant that is also easy to care for.

Avenbok is in many cases also called a white paper, especially when it comes to the tree's use as wood. This tree has a hardwood, one of the hardest that can be found Swedish trees today. However, it is not particularly common, because the tree in wild form does not become particularly large and the cultivation of hornbeam today is mainly about hedges and well-pruned ones. If you are looking for a hedge that grows nicely, can be shaped as you want and also delivers lots of lovely autumn colors, it is a hornbeam that you should plant!

An unassuming form favorite

There are few hedges on the market that are as easy to handle and grow as privets. It is a hedge that has an enormously good resistance to pollution and pruning, which means that you can easily and smoothly cut it into any shape.

It grows in a way that is very dense, which comes in handy for those who are not only looking for a clear boundary marking but also for those who want a plant privacy. Privet does the job efficiently and thanks to its ability to grow a lot every season, it does not take many years before you reach the level where privet more than well fulfills its role as a separator and protection for transparency.

Intense green leaves

The appearance of the plant is also a strength of privets. The plant grows very densely, and with the help of its many beautiful leaves it creates a lovely carpet and blanket. They are intensely green and have a leathery feel to them, at the same time as they have short stems and are shaped like narrow ovals.

The flowering period for privets is during June and July, and the plant's flowers emerge in clusters with small tubular flowers, which are creamy white in color. These flowers are not seen many times, so the branches on which the flowers grow are often thinned out, or they grow inwards into the bush itself. It also means that you will not necessarily experience the black, globular berries that replace the flowers. Some species have no berries at all and on some they are yellow.

Privet - easy-care, hardy and fast-growing evergreen plant

Not only are privets very easy to care for and also very durable, you can expect the hedge to grow up to half a meter each season, depending on the weather and conditions in the ground. How does it sound with a hedge that can grow up to three meters high, withstands hard pruning and can be cut to shape just as much as you like? Then it is privet you should choose as a hedge!

Privet is a constantly modern plant that can be used in many ways in the garden. It is ideal to use as a divider or as an effective and beautiful privacy - even in winter when it retains the majority of its leaves all year round. If you are looking to quickly grow a beautiful hedge, which can also offer beautiful flowers and berries that are poisonous - do not eat them, then it is a privet that you should plant in your garden!

At the end of spring, the pendants appear, which later become small fruits that the birds eat.

Hedges consisting of hornbeam (Carpinus Betulus) become excellent formal elements and also look good when combined with other native plants to form a varied hedge.

Cultivation of hornbeam (Carpinus Betulus)

Hornbeam (Carpinus Betulus) can grow at a rate of 20-40 cm per year and a recommendation is to keep it at a height of 1.5-5 m. One of the most interesting things about this hardy native plant is that it can be grown in a mixed domestic hedge to create a colorful winter interest. Because it is a hardy species, this plant is suitable for many different conditions.

Why you should grow a hornbeam hedge (Carpinus Betulus)

This plant has many features that you would like to see in your garden. Here are some reasons to grow a hornbeam hedge:

  • Grows well in many types of soil
  • Has beautiful autumn color
  • Protects your garden from noise and wind disturbances
  • With a full-grown height of up to 5 m, hornbeam (Carpinus Betulus) creates an excellent privacy
  • It radiates when grown in mixed domestic collections
  • Hedgehog hedges (Carpinus Betulus) become fantastic formal elements
  • It is an excellent choice for places struggling with lean soils such as chalk and clay
  • Although it resembles beech hedges in many ways, it does well in wetter soils
  • It has winter leaves that show a wilder mix of dark, eye-catching tones
  • It is an excellent sound barrier, wind protection and privacy protection
  • It provides an excellent habitat for wildlife, giving the hedge additional interest
  • It can be cut beautifully, so it is best if it is used in a formal feature
  • Only needs to be pruned once a year
  • The name hornbeam refers to the durability and hardness of the wood

Where to grow it

Carpinus Betulus is long-lived and is often grown as a hedge. It likes a slightly shaded or sunny place and also creates a wonderful structure and protection in the garden. Its leaves change color to golden brown in autumn. Like a versatile forest tree, it prefers moist, well-drained soil. Most importantly, the soil should be fertile.

How to plant

Here are the steps you should follow to plant Carpinus Betulus correctly:

  1. Water the plant with the root ball thoroughly before planting
  2. Choose a suitable planting area and remove the weeds to eliminate the competition for nutrients and water
  3. Dig a ditch that is twice the width of and of the same height as the root ball. Make sure that the bottom of the ditch is flat and that the sides are straight
  4. Dig some compost into the bottom of the ditch to provide the young plants with nutrients and allow the roots to penetrate into the soil quickly and easily.
  5. Fill the ditch with a mixture of compost and garden soil while pressing to the soil around the plant's root system.
  6. Water the soil to get it in place around the roots of the plant
  7. Apply a layer of ground cover around the plant, and be careful not to let it touch the stem as this may cause rot
  8. Water the plant thoroughly and keep it well watered during the first year of growth


You can either trim a Carpinus Betulus hedge in a variety of shapes or you can leave it so that it takes on a bushy shape for a more natural look. No matter what, it looks good

Although it can grow in many types of soils, it is not suitable for coastal areas

Planting distance

The planting distance is very important when you want to create a hedge. The distance must be correct, otherwise the hedge may not be as nice as you want it to be. One recommendation is that you plant two to three Carpinus Betulus seedlings per meter.

Care & Advice

It is important that you water the young plants properly until they are established. Once established, they will only need extra watering during dry periods.

  • Ground cover

Apply 4 cm of ground cover over the planting area to suppress weeds and reduce the rate of water evaporation from the soil. But also make sure that the ground cover is about 5 cm from the tree trunk to avoid rot.

  • Pruning

It is easy to keep Carpinus Betulus in a nice formal shape. You can also grow it in a mixed native hedge because of the tree's copper-colored leaves and because it provides wildlife protection in winter. One recommendation is to prune only once a year at the end of the summer. This is important to help the plant maintain its winter shape and color. Prune according to the shape you want to give it and how tall the tree has grown.

But if you have planted the tree as a solitaire, then you do not need to prune it. Its natural appearance is quite appealing when allowed to grow on its own.

  • Fattening

Fertilize Carpinus Betulus plants with an all-fertilizer to promote growth. Follow the instructions on the package when applying the fertilizer


  • Suitable for many types of soil
  • Has beautiful color in autumn
  • Reduces noise nuisance and acts as wind protection
  • Can be trimmed to a variety of shapes
  • Its foliage is a nesting place for birds
  • It can tolerate windy places

Should I buy Carpinus Betulus for a hedge?

Carpinus Betulus is a wonderful hedge plant for many reasons that we have discussed above. If you are looking for a hedge plant that will offer seasonal interest, you should choose Carpinus Betulus as it has shiny green foliage that changes to a copper color in autumn.

It also grows up to a height of 5 m, making it a perfect privacy screen to reduce noise and prevent wind from entering your home or garden. You can also trim this species or let it grow into a bushy and more naturalistic form. So you can say with certainty that this is one of the best hedge plants available

One of the reasons why so many people choose hornbeam is because it is so easy to plant and care for

. Here is a brief explanation of what is good to know:

Hornbeam can be planted in spring or autumn, and to give it extra nutrition, we recommend that it be fertilized in spring. Your hornbeam hedge will look best if you prune or cut it every year so that it stays tight. It is very important to keep in mind that you should only cut it during the JAS months (July, August, September) and only in dry weather.

A hornbeam hedge can reach a height of 10 - 15 meters, but since the hornbeam has a continuous trunk, you top it at exactly the height you want to keep the hedge. It is also suitable for smaller gardens because it can be kept very narrow. Which planting distance you choose to put your plants on depends on how dense a hedge you want from the beginning and how large plants you choose to put.

In the past, people usually bought their plants from their local retailer, but more and more people are choosing to buy their plants from online suppliers.

Video: How to Properly Fertilize Bonsai in Florida - Agresta Gardens

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