Planting a Pyracantha hedge

Last updated on August 22nd, 2016

Our site is reader supported, this means we may earn a small commission from Amazon and other affiliates when you buy through links on our site.

Thinking of planting a Pyracantha hedge, want to lean how to plant a hedge, not sure where to start then read on.

Spacing Plants

On average, hedging plants will be spaced between 2 and 3ft (60-90cm) apart and the hedge will be made up of a single row. If you’re trying to create a thick dense hedge, you will need more plants which need to be planted in double staggered rows (in a zigzag format).

These rows will need to be spaced 70-100cm apart, with 60-90cm (2-3ft) between each plant in the two rows.

A single row of pyracantha, will form a hedge up to 4ft wide, with this in mind its not very often you would need to plant double rows, as a 4ft width is usually an adequate thickness for most gardens.

“A general rule of thumb is plants need to be spaced so there are just a few inches from touching at either side”

Pyracantha hedge with orange berries, flower summer, produce berries in Autumn and winter
Established Pyracantha hedge


List of everything you will need for planting a hedge

  1. Fork
  2. Spade
  3. Rake
  4. Wheelbarrow
  5. Slow Release Fertiliser or substitute such as compost or farm manure
  6. Spring Line
  7. Secateurs (read or top 5 secatuers review)
  8. Hedging Plants such as Pyracantha, Leylandii, Laurel’s, berberis or another suitable hedging plant.

These instructions are a guide only and are ideal for planting pyracantha which are 1-3ft (30-90cm) tall. If planting larger plants you may need to alter the trench size etc to accommodate the plants.

Need to buy pyracantha plants?, many specialist nurseries now sell their plants on – Click here to find prices


Planting a hedge – Step 1

Before planting a hedge you need to dig a trench the same length of what you want your new hedge to be, this needs to be approximately 60cm (2ft) wide and 40-50cm deep. If you are planting larger plants you will need to alter the width and depth of the trench accordingly.

If you are planting a double hedge you will need to increase the width of the trench to approximately 90cm (3ft) wide. Simply pale the soil to the side of the trench and remove any weeds and large stones.

Planting a Hedge – Step 2

Now that you have successfully dug the trench its time to add some goodness to the soil to give you hedge a flying start. Firstly you need to aerate the soil and brake up the soil in the bottom of the trench. Use your fork to dig the prongs into the bottom and sides of the trench and break up the soil. Now you need to get one of your plants to make sure you have the correct depth, this will depend on the size of the pot or root ball. You need to make sure that the trench is deep enough so that there is enough room for a couple of inches of farm manure or compost to go underneath the plants and that the  soil level will come level with the top of the plants root ball once planted.

“You should only plant up to the original soil level on the plant, don’t plant your plants to deep and pile soil up the stem as this can kill the plants.”

Now you have the correct depth of the trench, you can now add a couple of inches of good compost of farm manure to the bottom of the trench and spread it out with your fork, so the surface is even. Use the fork to mix the compost or farm manure into the soil which is all ready their.

Planting a Hedge – Step 3

Now you need to put the hedging plants into the trench at the correct spacing, you may want to use a line to make sure you have the plants all straight but this is not essential as doing it by eye is usually good enough.

Now that all the plants are in the trench spaced correctly you can start filling the trench will the soil you removed from the trench firming around the base of the plants with your feet to remove any air pockets and give the plants a firm holding.

While filling the trench, if you want to apply a slow-release fertiliser such as slow release fertiliser granules or  Growmore you can mix this in the excess soil around the plants as you back fill.

Planting a Hedge, the finishing touches – Step 4

Now you have the hedge planted, you need to do the finishing touches, rake around the hedging plants lightly and water the plants thoroughly.

Make sure you water regularly until the hedge as started to get established, do not allow the soil around the base of the plants to become dry, as the last thing you want to be doing is replacing dead plants later on because of lack of water.

You may want to go through the hedging plants with some secateurs trimming off any broken branches or trimming some of the plants if needed.

Further Planting Notes

If you’re planting a hedge in an exposed location, then the plants will need to be secured to protect them and prevent them from being blown down and damaged by the wind.

The most common way is to insert a post at each side of the trench and fasten strong wires tightly from one post to another, you may need more post depending in the length of your hedge.

When planting the pyracantha plants into the trench, secure them to the wires,

A slightly easier way is to use strong canes and push them into the grown and secure the pyracantha plants directly to the canes.

Need to buy pyracantha plants?, many specialist nurseries now sell their plants on – Click here to find prices


  1. Greetings. I live in central Oklahoma in the U.S. and I have a question regarding planting a pyracantha hedge. First of all I’m using the ‘Yukon Belle’ variety as it is most commonly available here. It’s what’s available but most people; including those at nurseries; aren’t really knowledgeable about the plant.

    The plants I’m using are approximately two feet in height. The hedge is going to be planted behind a six and a half foot field fence. The fence line itself is 225 feet long.

    My question is this: What would be a good spacing between plants and an appropriate stand off distance from the fence? I’m quite confused on this because of the great disparity between recommended distances found on various websites including yours, the RHS and many others. The tags on the plants indicate the plants should reach 8-10 feet in height and 10 feet in width.

    Height is not an issue in my case. I live in the country and I plan to leave the hedge in a predominantly natural state. If the mature width of the plant is indeed 10 feet, that indicates to me that there should be approximately 5 feet of plant on either side of the main trunk as it were. Please forgive me if I’m not using the proper terminology as this is my first go at pyracantha.

    If 10 feet is in fact the true width of this plant, I would hazard a guess that 7-8 foot spacing between plants and a 4-5 foot standoff distance from the fence would be appropriate. Any help or guidance you can provide on the spacing issue will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your assistance.


    Doug Rosener
    Novice Pyracantha Farmer

  2. Anne Perriman

    I planted a Pyracantha Saphyr Rouge shrub in partial shade on chalky soil 2 years ago. It is watered well and fertilized with home made compost and bone meal. It has never produced berries. I planted a Firethorn Orange Glow at the same time which is producing berries. Any suggestions as to why my shrub is barren? Thank you

  3. johnmoore84

    Has your Saphyr Rouge produced flowers?, this is very unusual since the Orange slow seems to be fine. Could it be in a frost pocket and frost is damaging the flowers where as maybe the orange glow is a little more protected. Blight can destroy flowers but I assume you would have all ready spotted this early on.

  4. Anne Perriman

    Thank you for replying. I am presuming that the hedge not producing flowers has more frost resistance as it is protected on one side by a large llandi hedge: where as the producing hedge is exposed. Could the llandi hedge perhaps be causing the problem, taking all the goodness from the soil? It does however seem to be thriving and is twice the size of the Orange Glow which was planted at the same time.

  5. Anne Perriman

    Sorry, forgot to say: no berries as yet.

  6. John

    Hi Anne, another reason it may not be flowering is the soil is too rich, you usually see this when too much feed is applied in spring and the plant concentrates on growing rather than producing flowers. As its twice the size as the orange glow this could be the reason.

    If you are feeding stop and apply potash in stead, this promotes flowering and not foliage growth. Other than this unsure what else could be causing it.


  7. Anne Perriman

    Thank you for your help John. Much appreciated

Write A Comment