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mathias nurseries hedge on top of a wall

How to Grow a Hedge on Top of a Wall: Tips from the Experts

In today's quest for privacy and an enchanting outdoor space, a popular trend is emerging - planting hedges on top of walls. This unique approach not only provides privacy but also adds a touch of elegance to your property.

In this article, we'll delve into the art of growing hedges atop walls, how to maintain them for a visually pleasing effect and explore the reasons why this option is gaining popularity. Additionally, we'll spotlight a few low-maintenance plant choices that are ideal for this purpose.

Why Choose Wall-Top Hedges for Privacy?

Space Optimisation: Wall-top hedges maximise the use of space, making them an excellent choice for smaller gardens where traditional hedges may not be feasible.

Visual Appeal: Planting a hedge on a wall will add an architectural element, creating a unique and aesthetically pleasing boundary for your property.

Height and Density: Wall-top hedges can achieve impressive heights and density, providing a substantial privacy screen.

Noise Reduction: The thick foliage of your hedge can act as a natural noise barrier, creating a more tranquil environment.

Deterrent to Intruders: Hedges on top of walls make it harder to access your property, enhancing security.

How to Select the Right Plants for Your Wall-Top Hedge

To create a stunning wall-top hedge, you must choose the right hedges to plant. It’s essential to consider how the plant will grow and how far its roots will spread once it becomes established.

Because you’re starting off the ground, it’s better to use smaller hedging plants on the top of your wall.

Another factor to consider is how you will maintain it. A hedge on a wall can be challenging to prune if it becomes too tall.

Here are some top choices known for their minimal care requirements:

Photinia Red Robin

Photinia Red Robin is a popular option for hedging, thanks to its vibrant colour and beautiful leaves. This is a fast-growing plant that can be used as a ready-made hedge and has the added bonus of being an attractive feature to your garden, as well as offering privacy.

Euonymus Green Spire

With a dense and fast-growing nature, Euonymus Green Spire makes a fantastic option for both edging and formal hedges, and will create an instant screen. The glossy leaves are eye-catching and offer a classic look to your outdoor space, while this evergreen shrub offers coverage all year round.


Lavender creates a beautiful aesthetic with highly scented flowers. You can use lavender as a hedging plant on the top of walls to create an informal look, as it enjoys plenty of direct sunlight.

mathias nurseries lavender hedge

Growing and Maintaining Wall-Top Hedges


Ensure that the wall can support the weight of the hedges. Instead of planting the hedge directly on top of a wall, you may want to consider building two walls around three feet apart. Fill the space between the walls with soil, and then plant your hedges on top of the soil.

Pruning and Trimming

Regular pruning and trimming is essential to encourage your hedges to grow along the wall. Trim for shape and density and guide their growth with proper supports.

Read our blog for more tips on trimming your hedge.

Mathias Nurseries hedges being trimmed


Adequate watering is essential, especially during the establishment phase. Once established, most of the selected low-maintenance plants are relatively drought-resistant. You may wish to run leaky hose along the length of your wall to keep your hedge watered during the drier months. 

Read our blog for advice on watering your hedge.

Soil Quality

Ensure that the soil around the wall-top hedges is well-draining and fertile. Regularly replenish the soil with organic matter.

Pest and Disease Management

Keep an eye out for pests and diseases and address them promptly. Well-maintained hedges are more resistant to these issues.

Read our blog on everything you need to know about planting a hedge next to a fence for ultimate privacy.

Aesthetically Pleasing Wall-Top Hedges

To make your wall-top hedges even more visually appealing:

Shape and Design: Choose a design that complements your wall and the overall landscape. You can create interesting patterns and shapes using different hedge plants.

Colour Palette: Consider a colour palette that complements your surroundings. Mixing various plant colours can add vibrancy. 

Lighting: Outdoor lighting can illuminate your wall-top hedges, creating a captivating effect during the evening hours. Consider placing up lights along your wall to produce a dramatic look.

Planting Hedges on a Wall

Planting hedges on top of walls is a trend that offers privacy, elegance, and minimal maintenance. When selected and cared for thoughtfully, these hedges can transform your outdoor space into a private sanctuary. With the right plants, proper maintenance, and attention to aesthetics, you can enjoy both the practical benefits and the visual charm of wall-top hedges.

Tips from the experts

“Planting on a wall is a great way to enhance a built space and add some natural texture to it, however drainage is key. The soil within the wall must have adequate drainage so that it doesn’t act like a bucket and end up with water sitting in it and drowning the roots of the hedge”

“Brick or stone walls can end up looking utilitarian, so adding plants with good strong colour such as Photinia Red Robin with its vibrant red new growth can really transform the wall into something much more aesthetically pleasing. If a low hedge is required, then Euonymus Green Spire is a great choice as it clips well and makes a dense low hedge. Likewise, if privacy on top of the wall is not paramount, then planting lavender can be a wonderful scented choice which will attract many bees and pollinators in the summer time”

Will Mathias

If you’re planning to add a wall-top hedge to your garden, but are still unsure about any aspect, speak to the team at Mathias Nurseries. Our experienced team are here to help you make the right decisions for your hedge.

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