Skip Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus 'Schipkaensis') One of the best species for a laurel hedge is ‘Schipkaensis’, a compact English laurel. It matures to 10’ tall by 7’ wide. It is a great choice for a hedge on a smaller scale, like in a city lot. It strikes a good balance: it is not too large, but tall enough to form an effective screen without blocking too much light. It is low-maintenance, drought tolerant once established, and can take sun or shade.