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22 June 2021

When do I cut my hedge?

Find out when's the best time to cut your hedges to keep them healthy and looking neat
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Adele Dyer
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Most hedges will only need to be cut once or twice a year. Although, there are certain varieties that need a little more maintenance. 

However, because hedges are made from all different types of trees and shrubs, the best time of year to trim them will vary. 

We run through the optimal times of year to cut popular hedges, including beech, privet and laurel hedges. 

Discover which models we recommend in out hedge trimmer reviews.

When do I cut a yew hedge?

  • How often should I trim a yew hedge? Once a year 
  • When should I trim a yew hedge? August or September

If it's getting too large then you can also prune it back in April. 

When should I cut a yew hedge?

When do I cut a leyland cypress hedge?

  • How often should I trim a leyland cypress hedge? Up to three times a year
  • When should I trim a leyland cypress hedge? April, July and late August 

It's fast growing and you can't cut back beyond the green growth, or the plant won't recover and it will leave bare patches. Little and often is the best way to keep it under control. 

When should I cut a leyland cypress hedge?

When do I cut a beech hedge?

  • How often should I trim a beech hedge? Once or twice a year
  • When should I trim a beech hedge? August and mid-winter

Beech and hornbeam hedges grow rapidly in the early part of the year, but need to grow a little after cutting to make sure there are no bare patches through the winter. If the hedges have grown too large, cut back hard in mid-winter, avoiding very cold spells. 

When should I cut a beech hedge?

When do I cut a privet hedge?

  • How often should I trim a privet hedge? Twice a year 
  • When should I trim a privet hedge? Between May and August 

The more you cut it, the more it forms a dense, even hedge and the easier it is to keep it to the same size. If necessary, prune it hard in April to reduce the size of the hedge. 

When should I cut a privet hedge?

When do I cut a laurel hedge?

  • How often should I trim a laurel hedge? Once a year  
  • When should I trim a laurel hedge? July or August 

As this plant has large, tough leaves, hedge trimmers can leave them looking ragged. Remove any damaged leaves with secateurs to keep the hedge healthy and attractive. Cut back hard in spring to reshape overgrown hedges. 

When should I cut a laurel hedge?

When do I cut a hawthorn hedge?

  • How often should I trim a hawthorn hedge? Once or twice a year
  • When should I trim a hawthorn hedge? After flowering in June. And again in Autumn if you want a formal hedge

Alternatively, cut every few years and leave the berries for the birds if you like an informal hedge. To reduce a large hedge, hard prune in winter. 

When should I trim a hawthorn hedge?

When do I cut a holly hedge?

  • How often should I trim a holly hedge? Once a year  
  • When should I trim a holly hedge? Late summer

If it's overgrown, cut back hard in spring. 

When should I trim a holly hedge?

When do I cut a berberis hedge?

  • How often should I trim a berberis hedge? Once a year  
  • When should I trim a berberis hedge? After it has flowered

If you prefer an informal hedge with berries, cut back every few years to stop it getting too large. 

When do I trim a berberis hedge?

When do I cut a escallonia hedge?

  • How often should I trim a escallonia hedge? Once or twice a year
  • When should I trim a escallonia hedge? May and late August

Escallonia can be trimmed in May and again in late August if you want a formal hedge without flowers. For an informal, flowering hedge, cut after flowering in June. Hard prune in the spring to reduce its size.

Do you need a new hedge trimmer? See the best hedge trimmers for small and large hedges.