Skip laurel against a fence care infographicSkip laurel against a fence is easy to care for as it is a low-maintenance and hardy plant. You need to carefully calculate the distance between the plants and your fence for the best appearance.

So what do you need to grow skip laurels? Continue reading this guide to learn important information and useful tips and tricks.

Important Details About Skip Laurels

Skip laurels are very common hedge plants. They are common because of their thick leaves and shrubby growth, which makes them denser than other laurels and border plants. Skip laurels are evergreen and easy to maintain, so first-time growers and landscapers prefer starting with these plants.

Skip laurels have a beautiful appearance that improves the look of your home. They also act as the best border plants for your home and are very easy to identify.

– Identifying Skip Laurels

Skip laurels are beautiful laurels with unique characteristics. Here are some special features of the plant:

  • Close Look of Skip LaurelPlant appearance: Skip laurels cast a vase-like shadow and can grow up to 10-18 feet (120-216 inches) tall and 5-7 (60-84 inches) feet wide. They have an average growth rate of 24 inches per year.
  • Flowers: Skip laurels produce white flowers with a very fine fragrance that can attract beautiful pollinators such as butterflies, bees and birds.
  • Fruits: Your border plants can produce red berries<span style=”font-weight: 400;”> in fall and winter that are eaten by songbirds and other bird species. With skip laurels, you are feeding nature in the fall or winter.

These are such beautiful plants, right?

– Some Common Uses of Skip Laurels

Skip laurels are not popular for nothing. Here are some of its uses:

  • Border plant: This shrub can be used as a fence. It is common to grow laurels against a fence, but they can actually be used to replace the fence itself.
  • Privacy: The thick laurel shrubs for privacy prevent people from looking through them. You will be completely safe when you plant skip laurels as border plants. 
  • Deer-proof plant: Deer do not eat the leaves of skip laurels unlike those of other plants, so skip laurels are a go-to plant if you live in a region with a lot of deer.

After learning the benefits of growing skip laurels, you will definitely want to grow some for yourself. Can you plant skip laurels against a fence? This next section will show you all you need to know.

Can I Plant Skip Laurel Against a Fence?

Yes, you can grow skip laurels against a fence with proper care. Planting skip laurel against a fence is easy, but you will need to know some essential things so that you do not make mistakes. Here are some important tips for achieving this successfully:

– Do Not Plant Your Laurels Too Close to the Fence

Take note that skip laurels do not love growing too close to fences. Fences taller than skip laurels can prevent light from reaching the plants, which will also limit the growth and spread of the plant. To grow skip laurels against a fence, you should make sure that there are at least 3 inches between the matured laurels and the fence.

– Calculating the Spread

To calculate the distance your plants should be apart from each other and the fence, ask the gardener or nursery about the final spread of the plant. You should then divide that spread by half or a third. Grow the plants closer for a denser green fence.

– Mulching

To reduce how often you water your skip laurels, you should mulch them. Mulch also acts as a slow-release fertilizer for your shrubs.

– Buy Small Plants and Prune Them

Start your skip laurels as little seedlings so that you can grow them to the exact size and shape that you want.

– Hardiness

Skip laurels grow best in USDA hardiness zones 5-9. If you do not live in these zones, you should consider growing other varieties of laurels that can thrive in your zone so your plants will not give you problems.


What Type of Fence?

Even though you can use any type of fence, you should try to make your plants comfortable by using a suitable fence. Solid non-permeable fences can limit the growth of your skip laurels as the leaves and branches cannot pass through them. Also, high fences can block sunlight from reaching your plants.

You should use fences with spaces in-between like chain link fences or wooden fences so that the branches and leaves can grow properly and have sufficient sunlight. When your skip laurels are matured enough and have grown to become border plants, you can remove the fence. This process is called skip laurel fencing.


Let us discuss the important requirements of skip laurels so that you can grow them with ease:

– Lighting

Skip laurels prefer full sun and need more than 6 hours of direct sunlight, but they can also thrive in partial shade. Make sure that your plants receive at least 5 hours of sunlight every day.

– Watering

Skip laurels are drought-tolerant, but you should water them occasionally. Water your plants every 7-10 days.

– Fertilizing

Fertilize your skip laurels with a slow-release fertilizer in spring. You can use water-soluble foliar fertilizer to correct their nutrient deficiencies.

– Temperature

Skip laurels grow as an evergreen in USDA hardiness zones 5-9. You should consider growing other types of laurels if you do not live in the suitable skip laurel regions.

– Planting Your Shrubs

You should dig a trench to plant your skip laurels, as digging individual holes can be more stressful and you may not get a straight line. The soil should be well-drained, so you should amend it if it is not.

The depth of the hole should be exactly the height of your skip laurel nursery bags or the container they came with. Place the laurel seedlings in the grove and cover it with soil.

– Pruning Your Skip Laurels

You should prune your skip laurels to help them grow shrubby and bushy. Prune them after flowering, but take note that pruning your shrubs can reduce the number of fruits that they would have otherwise produced.

Other Laurel Species You Can Grow

Depending on your USDA hardiness zone, here are some other laurel species that you can grow:

– English Laurel

Grows best in zones 6-9. It can grow up to 20-25 feet (240-300 inches) tall and 10-15 feet (120-180 inches) wide.

– Cherry Laurel

Plant this laurel if you live in USDA hardiness zone 7-10. It can grow up to 15-20 feet (180-240 inches) tall and 10-15 feet (120-180 inches) wide.

– Mountain Laurel

This species is not in the same genus as others, but can grow in zones 4-9. It can grow to an average height of 20 feet (240 inches) and spread 5-15 feet (60-180 inches).

You do not have to grow skip laurels if they are not suitable for your hardiness zone.

Problems and Solutions

Even though skip laurels are easy to grow and care for, you can still face a few problems when growing them. Here are some issues to watch out for:

– Fence Problems

It is not recommended to use solid, non-permeable fences for skip laurels because they can block the leaves and branches of your laurels from growing properly. If you use chain-link fences, your skip laurels can grow through them freely.

If you do not remove the chain-link fence before your shrubs grow through it, it can be hard to remove it later. You should remove the fence before your skip laurels grow through it. When you grow skip laurels properly, they can act as solid fences.

– Tall and Thin Trees

One common problem that people have with skip laurels is when they do not grow as sturdy border plants but grow tall and thin instead. There are two major causes of this problem:

– Buying Mature Plants

When purchasing skip laurel seedlings, you should go for smaller ones. Buying larger plants means you are buying what already has shape, so it is more difficult to grow your large skip laurels into your desired shape.

– Not Pruning Your Plants

If you do not prune your skip laurels, they will grow thin and tall. Prune the plants regularly or hire someone to do so if you can’t.

To prevent your skip laurels from growing thin and tall, you should buy small seedlings and prune them regularly. Also, don’t forget to fertilize your plants.

– Chlorosis

Chlorosis is a situation in which the leaves of your skip laurels become yellow and pale, eventually withering. Chlorosis occurs because of the following reasons:

  • Nutrient deficiency: The deficiency of nitrogen and other nutrients can lead to the yellowing of your skip laurel leaves. Use a standard shrub fertilizer for your plant. To correct the chlorosis, spray foliar fertilizer on the leaves of your fence plants.
  • Lack of light: Shrubs have a brighter coloration in their leaves when they have access to light. In low light, your plants will lose their green pigments. Plant your skip laurels where they can receive at least five hours of direct sunlight every day.
  • Overwatering: Overwatering can lead to root rot, which causes the leaves of your skip laurels to become pale and yellow. Root rot is dangerous to plants, so you should water your plants less often, amend the soil to become well-drained, and use fungicides to repel fungi away from your skip laurels.

Make sure that you grow strong and healthy skip laurels.


How big do Skip Laurels get?

Skip Laurels can reach a height of 15-20 feet, forming a dense evergreen screen ideal for privacy or windbreaks.

How long do Skip Laurels take to establish?

Skip Laurels typically take 2-3 years to establish and grow into a mature state, providing optimal benefits.

How close to property lines can I plant Skip Laurels?

It’s recommended to plant Skip Laurels at least 5-8 feet away from property lines to allow for healthy growth and maintenance.


Close Shot of Skip LaurelSkip laurel bushes for privacy are hardy and easy to grow, right? Take note of the following essential points we discussed above:

  • You can grow skip laurels against a fence, but grow them a few inches away to allow the plants to spread properly.
  • You should use semi-permeable fences such as a chain-link fence rather than solid, non-permeable fences such as a stone fence so that your skip laurels will not be limited.
  • Buy smaller skip laurels and prune them to help them grow properly. Buying mature skip laurels and not pruning them will make them grow tall and thin.
  • When planting your skip laurels, dig a grove and plant the young trees in it to ensure that you plant them in a straight line.
  • Fertilize your skip laurels regularly in spring so that they can produce a beautiful bloom.

Use the cool tips in this article to grow the healthiest skip laurels, and you’ll have beautiful, thriving border plants in no time!

5/5 - (18 votes)
Evergreen Seeds