Hedge for Northern Garden with Sandy Soil
I have an area that is full sun half the day, and the soil is sandy. Can you recommend a hedge that is compatible with dry, sandy soil for a northern Midwest garden?
Hedge cotoneaster (Cotoneaster lucidus) was the first plant to come to mind. It grows 6 to 10 feet tall and wide but can be pruned into a hedge and is hardy in zones 4 to 7. This plant is tolerant of harsh conditions and puts on a glorious fall display when the leaves turn a combination of yellow, red, and purple.
The ninebarks (Physocarpus) are drought tolerant and native to much of the Midwest. The finer texture and upright growth habit of dwarf ninebark makes it suitable for hedging. Diablo (10 to 12 feet tall) and Summer Wine (5 to 6 feet tall) are purple leaf ninebarks that make colorful hedges for areas with sandy soils.
One of the upright Junipers such as Ames, Blue Point Mountbatten, and Witchita Blue would tolerate the dry soils. They do prefer full sun but can probably tolerate this location. Be sure to select the one that is the height and width you desire.