Desgin snapshot: When hedging helps

Hedges have a bit of a bad rap in the residential-architecture world. They're often employed to hide things: condensers, vents, trash enclosures, and other unsightly appurtenances. Or they're used to shield private life from prying eyes. But hedges can augment, even enhance, design attributes, rather than merely mitigate design challenges.

This tight, neatly-trimmed hedge cozies up to the porch rail it wraps. It helps to nest the porch without overwhelming it. The trick is to keep a hedge like this from brimming the rail, or worse, topping it. At this height, it offers security, a pillowed embrace.

All hail the hedge.

by Katie Hutchison for House Enthusiast