I had an escallonia hedge all around the back of my site (1/2 acre) that has died from disease and especially frost/snow. I want to replace it with an evergreen preferably, as I have copper beech in the front. My neighbor has laurel which has suffered quite a bit from frost. Can you recommend a plant that can cope with an exposed site, heavy frost and is moderately quick growing? Is leylandii really that bad? What about Thuja or viburnum?
Laurel may suffer some surface damage but soon recovers. Holly is completely hardy. Thuya tends to get a fungus disease, Leyland cypress is not suitable around a garden as it gets too big and cannot be cut back hard. Probably best of all is yew, hardy and trims to a beautiful line, also native and traditional, though not where cattle or horses might reach it.