English yew has been grown for centuries and planted in grand gardens all over Europe. Yew is easy to grow, and provided it is happy, will grow quickly. However, to keep a formal hedge tight and sturdy, it does need clipping with either hand shears or electric shears at least once a year. June and again in August keeps a young hedge in shape. If left too loose, it will not support itself over a certain height. In a single row, yew will make a 5ft wide hedge when mature, but if shapes are required, a double row is advisable to keep balance when complicated shapes are created. A general fertiliser in April and May to the surface of the soil around the root zone will help maintain health and colour. Although yew is a hungry plant, it likes poor soil rather than rich, so the use of manure is not advised except as top dressing in later years. Granulated fertiliser is advised for beginners, as wet manures and mushroom compost dressings can encourage diseases which then require management.
Yew can be grown to any size, and shapes can be clipped to your personal preference if required. Ready made topiary shapes are also available. Please ask.