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Replacing a laurel hedge with edibles

 
Tegan Russo
Posts: 34
Location: Maritime Northwest USA, zone 8b
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I have a laurel hedge that I'd like to replace with something useful. Right now it provides privacy for a patio, and I think it's also stabilizing the ground below the house. The hedge is between a concrete patio and the top of a several foot high rock wall. So I want to figure out a way of changing the hedge composition without digging up the roots. Any ideas? Could I cut it down, plant something else between the roots, and cut off any laurel shoots until the roots finally die?
 
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