removing one side of a cedar hedge

(Question)

We have a ‘one hedge , two properties’ situation in which the one property owners has removed their side now in May. Question : there is now only stumps left on one side, but will it effect the life on healthy side ones the hedge no longer has protection against weather (snow etc..) ?

 

(Answer)

Your cedars may well survive this drastic cutting if they are otherwise healthy.   If your side of the hedge needs pruning for shape, now is a good time to do this (mid- June) as the hedge will start to fill in during the summer months.  You should also consider amending your soil, which will increase nutrients and improve water retention.  Winter protection in the form of burlap wraps is likely not something you can consider in this situation, so it will be important to give your cedars as much help as possible in these other ways.  We answer many questions about the care of cedar hedging and I’ve included some links to earlier posts below which you may find helpful, as well as a recent article from garden expert Mark Cullen on pruning cedar hedges.

You may ultimately decide that this hedge no longer has the “curb appeal” that you want for your property.  In this case, and especially if the hedge has grown large enough to be unmanageable without dramatic pruning, you may feel it is time to remove your cedars altogether.  You and your neighbours could consider a different approach to this space, or perhaps another hedging plant.  The Toronto Master Gardeners has a guide to evergreen hedging materials that might be useful as a starting point: https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/factsheet/evergreens-suitable-for-hedging-a-toronto-master-gardeners-guide/

https://mark-cullen.blogspot.ca/2010/09/cedar-hedges-investment-that-grows.html

https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/askagardener/cedar-hedge/

https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/askagardener/pruning-and-fertilizing-cedar-hedge/

https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/askagardener/thinning-cedar-hedge/