Corylus avellana, commonly known as European Hazelnut or Common Hazel, is a deciduous shrub that is frequently utilized for hedging purposes. Here’s an overview of Corylus avellana as a hedging plant:
- Common Hazel is a multi-stemmed shrub that typically reaches a height of 10 to Late Winter;Early Spring feet, but when used for hedging, it is often kept more compact through regular pruning.
- The leaves are rounded, serrated, and a vibrant green, providing a fresh and appealing backdrop. The shrub’s dense branching structure contributes to its effectiveness as a hedge.
- Seasonal Interest:
- In late winter to early spring, Corylus avellana produces yellowish catkins that add a subtle charm to the landscape.
- The leaves turn to shades of yellow and orange in the fall, offering additional visual interest before winter.
- Edible Nuts:
- One distinctive feature of Common Hazel is its production of edible nuts, known as hazelnuts. While the primary focus of the plant might be its hedging function, the nuts add an extra layer of utility for those interested in harvesting them.
- Corylus avellana is adaptable to various soil types, including well-drained loamy soils. It is relatively hardy and can tolerate a range of environmental conditions, making it suitable for diverse gardening situations.
- It is also known for its ability to thrive in partial shade, although it can do well in full sun too.
- Hedging and Screening:
- Common Hazel is often used for informal hedging due to its dense growth habit. It can create effective privacy screens, windbreaks, or natural-looking boundaries.
- Regular pruning can help maintain the desired height and shape, making it a versatile option for different landscape designs.
- Wildlife Value:
- Corylus avellana provides habitat and food for wildlife. Birds, squirrels, and other small animals are attracted to the nuts, while the dense foliage offers shelter.
- Low Maintenance:
- This shrub is relatively low-maintenance, requiring periodic pruning to keep its shape and size in check. Pruning is typically done during late winter or early spring.
- Landscape Uses:
- In addition to its primary role as a hedge, Common Hazel can be used in mixed shrub borders, woodland gardens, or as part of a wildlife-friendly landscape design.
- Its adaptability and unassuming beauty make it a versatile component in various garden settings.
Please see our GUIDE TO PLANTING HEDGES for more info.