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Privet Ligustrum

Growing Privet: Tips at a Glance

  • Type Semi-evergreen shrub
  • Lifespan Long-lived perennial
  • USDA Zones 5-10
  • Light Sun or some shade
  • Water Moist soil
  • Location Perimeter plant
  • Design Tip Privacy hedge
  • Caution Invasive in areas
  • Peak Season Dark winter berries

Privet: A Field Guide

Semi-evergreen privet hedges are stout guardians of privacy.

Privets have a long tradition of serving as fence substitutes, for grand seaside Long Island mansions and modest suburban gardens alike. A benefit of Ligustrum’s approximately 50 species: They grow fast and can be pruned hard without consequence. A drawback: Privet propagates easily through seed dispersal by birds who eat the berries and has become invasive, considered a pest in a number of US states as well as in Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.

If privet is invasive in your neighborhood, consider there alternative shrubs for a privacy hedge: pittosporum, rhododendron, boxwood, mahonia, or laurel.

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Planting, Care & Design of Privet

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