Saturday, 1 April 2017
Good Hedges Make Good Neighbours
Seeing footage of Dyton laying hedges in The Jerkin and Hedgerow, I have become a little obsessed with the all things hedge. Out driving I may tut disapprovingly at scruffy, rambling hedges or nod approvingly at well-maintained and well-trimmed hedges, noting the shape and the shrubs used.
Do look at what's out there on your drive home today. You will find that many farmers and landowners have a lot of respect for the hedgerow as barrier, wildlife oasis and thing of beauty. Good for them and us.
Indulge me in my obsession by visiting the site of the National Hedgelaying Society. The society's patron HRH Prince Charles is a keen hedgeman.
If we can up the number of the society's members and make use of the services it promotes, we help spread the knowledge of hedgelaying, then maybe I won't have to witness so many neglected hedgerows in Somerset. You know how I like everything just so. I also think councils could do their bit to help reintroduce proper hedges where they've been lost. Harangue your council.
From the National Hedgelaying Society site you can see examples of regional styles. Don't you find that fascinating? Of course you do.
The Midland Bullock (below) is a personal favourite. It looks like a very robust barrier. I'd be very happy to have that style instituted around the perimeter of Tweed Towers. Good hedges make good neighbours.
Bulldog Tools of Wigan, since 1780, produce British-made tools specifically for hedgelaying.
The Bill Hook (below) has a double-edged blade for thinning and trimming. The solid-forged tool is made from a single piece of steel and comes with a lifetime guarantee.
Considering how long Bulldog Tools have been in business, old Dyton may well have used one himself.
If starting a new hedge takes your fancy, then Buckingham Nurseries is your chap. From their Hedging site they offer a guide to planting a hedge. You can choose hedging collections such as Mixed Native and Evergreen.
By maintaining a hedge, you do your bit to perfect nature and leave the world more beautiful than you found it.