Using Neon Burst as a hedge

A Quick Makeover for Summer Long Color

It’s easy to overlook those spots in the yard where the look is “ok” but not exactly what you had in mind. This is the tale of how a quick two-hour makeover literally transformed a drab, forgotten area. For reference sake, this home is located in the suburbs of Minneapolis, MN, and the plant featured is Neon Burst dogwood from First Editions®, however it’s a story that occurs in almost every yard, anywhere.


The hedge of viburnum had been planted by the homeowner 15 years earlier, and in that time they performed extremely well. They had been selected for their compact size as the goal was to soften the fence line but not close off the view of their neighbors. Every two or three years, the small viburnum hedge would be sheered down about 6-12” to maintain its shape. Eventually, the plants started to appear a bit coarse and unsightly (as seen in this photo.) The homeowner had two options: either selectively prune the viburnum hedge to reinvigorate its growth, or replace it.


Enter Neon Burst dogwood! After a little debate, it was decided to replace the hedge. After 15 years, it was time to try a new look. Neon Burst is an excellent choice in this instance for a few reasons. First, look at how the area is brightened up by its soft, chartreuse-yellow foliage compared to the dark green leaves from before. It gives the space that much needed pop of color, and as you view it from afar, it is the perfect accent. Second, Neon Burst is super durable and can tolerate a wide range of soils and exposures. Many yellow leaf dogwood struggle in full sun areas. This particular spot can be a little tricky because it receives dappled morning light and then extremely hot afternoon sun. No problem for Neon Burst! Third, many people forget that plants do not need to bloom all the time to provide color. The summery yellow foliage will make way for brilliant red stems in winter!


This was one of those transformations that was easy to do, and didn’t require a lot of planning. One hour to pop out those old viburnum and one hour to plant, water, and mulch the new Neon Burst hedge. Leaving plenty of time to enjoy one’s favorite beverage while enjoying the view!