Whether you’re looking for a bit of privacy or to add some colorful beauty to your yard, hedges are a great solution for sprucing up your landscaping in South Florida. With many options available, you can choose between a wall of solid green, bright pink flowers, or even a tasty fruit producer. Whatever the hedge you choose for your South Florida Landscape, there will be unique benefits and considerations to be aware of. In this blog we will introduce six choices for you to keep in mind. If you’d like help selecting, sourcing, or planting a new hedge in your yard, please contact us!
Clusia comes in two varieties, Clusia rosea & Clusia guttifera, both of which thrive in South Florida’s hot and hearty weather. Both have fantastic drought resistance, are low maintenance and display a beautiful, tropical look and texture. The teardrop-shaped leaves leaves are thick and durable, making them an excellent choice for privacy hedges.
Clusia rosea, known as pitch apple, has larger leaves and most commonly is grown as a tree.
Clusia guttifera is most commonly grown as a hedge in both a standard and dwarf variety. Depending on your preference you can trim it regularly for a constant manicured look or let it grow with less frequent trims for a more casual tropical look. While new Clusia will require regular watering while becoming established, mature plants will only need water during occasional dry spells.
You don’t typically think of a palm tree as a hedge, but the Areca Palm Tree, (Chrysalidocarpus lutescens) grows in clusters forming thick clumps of many trunks – making it great for privacy and a tropical feel. It’s one of the most popular palms in South Florida due to its gorgeous tropical vibe and ease of maintenance.
Often called butterfly palm, due to its smooth-textured fronds, the Areca palm can grow up to 15 feet. Depending on your preference, it can be left full to the ground, or thinned out to be more transparent.
The Cocoplum is often found gracing the landscape along South Florida beaches. Being native to South Florida and adapted to our weather and climate, it is a terrific choice for hedges. A cocoplum plant has the ability to grow up to 15 feet, but is most commonly kept trimmed to about 4-5 feet.
The plant produces small white flowers, which eventually grow into the delicious cocoplum fruit. Cocoplum fruit is about the size of a large cherry, and is most often dark purple in color. The flesh is pulpy, like a peach, but has a taste reminiscent of a coconut. Past the flesh is the seed, which tastes like an almond when de-shelled. Some enjoy making the fruit into a jam or jelly – a fantastic local treat!
Cocoplum is a great hedge if you love the fruit, but if the fruit is not for you, then just give the hedge a trim in the late spring to cut off the majority of the flowers/developing fruit and whatever remains will be cleaned up by native birds. It will grow best with quarterly fertilization while young, annual fertilization when mature, and a trimming every 4 to 6 months.
Green Island Ficus
Green Island Ficus, a common hedge in South Florida, boasts deep green and glossy leaves, and a clean look that’s perfect for a well-manicured yard. Its resilient nature makes it friendly to both sun and shade. Green Island Ficus has become more and more popular in South Florida due to its slow growing nature and high resistance to disease and pests.
One benefit of Green Island Ficus is its versatility – It does well as a well-manicured hedge, but also in a more tropical landscape design. It tends to grow slow, making it easy to maintain and requires only occasional watering once established. It is most typically trimmed to about 3 feet and used as a low hedge.
One of the most common hedges in South Florida is the beautiful bright yellow and green Trinette. The vibrant leaves look pretty as a main hedge or an accent, bringing versatility to a yard that’s dominantly green, or beautiful contrast to pink and purple plants and flowers.
The biggest benefit of the Trinette: It’s insanely durable! Doing well in both sun and shade, it takes very little care and looks great next to about anything. It’s no wonder you can find Trinette all over the place in South Florida.
Amazingly versatile, Bougainvillea can be grown as a tree, a shrub, a vine, or a hedge, and is absolutely beautiful in a wide array of pinks, purples, yellows, whites, oranges and reds. If you’re looking to add color to your yard, along with a bit of privacy, the bougainvillea may be a great choice for you.
In order to thrive, bougainvillea needs a lot of sun and quarterly fertilization to flower profusely– so we won’t recommend this plant for shady areas. But if the conditions are right, this plant can be a gorgeous treat.
And as they say – every bougainvillea has its thorn. These beautiful plants are not to be played with due to thorny stems and shouldn’t be planted near barefoot walking paths or play areas. The upside of this thorny hedge is that no unwanted visitors (or neighbors) would ever push their way through.
Whether it’s one of the above choices or something different, we – at Findmeatree.com and Coco Loco Landscape Design – would love to help you with selecting, sourcing, or planting a new hedge for your backyard paradise. Please call us at 561-403-0777 or contact us.