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Ditch bushes

Our house is bordered on one side by a set of old railway tracks, separated by a ditch.  The tracks are being removed to make way for a walking path.  I have trees lining my side of the ditch, but was wondering if there was anything in the way of a bush or shrub to deter trespassers. 

The ditch rarely gets any sunlight, and often has standing water up to 2 feet for weeks on end.  The ditch is around 12 feet wide, and my part runs about 150 feet.  The bush or shrub should be think, so it's hard to get through.  Does anyone have any suggestions on what to plant in there? 

Thanks,

Brian

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Posts

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,258

    I'd plant either pyracantha or blackthorn hedging along there. 

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,869

    Def agree with Dove - they're your best options. They grow quickly and both are impenetrable.
    And if you go for blackthorn (sloes) a good excuse to make some delicious sloe gin :)
    But don't expect anything to grow if they're going to be sitting in 2ft of water for weeks on end.

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 21,143

    The police recommended that we grew Berberis around our oil tank, they grew very quickly and very prickly, nice flowers then berries. The bees seem to like it and it's a nice red colour. . 

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,258

    I had thought about suggesting berberis Lyn ... I love it ... but doesn't it need more sun than the OP describes? 

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 4,053

    They are going to be really keen trespassers if they have to first cross a 12 foot wide ditch 2 ft deep in water!! Is that the type of area you live in?  I would think that the walkers who use the new path would keep to the path.......Dogs however would be a different kettle of fish!

    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • WateryWatery Posts: 388

    Laughing at the idea of the trespassers fording the 12 ft ditch.   Still, I can understand.  I feel so bad for people whose gardens encompass a footpath.  I remember in Yorkshire my husband and I couldn't find the waterfall we were looking for and must have passed a certain house about 6 times.  Right on the footpath...yet must have been so annoying for them.  

    I love blackthorn when it is in bloom and would jump at the chance to have it somewhere I could see it but wasn't likely to get the spines through my feet (or my dog's).  My garden's too small.  Thank goodness for all the hedgerows around.  I love the frothiness.

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 21,143
    Dovefromabove says:

    I had thought about suggesting berberis Lyn ... I love it ... but doesn't it need more sun than the OP describes? 

    See original post

     Mine is facing North East, it gets early sun, that's all, then maybe the setting sun for a short time.

    what I didn't notice until I'd posted was the the OP said it can be under 2' of water, I'm not so  they'd like that. 

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Do the shrubs / plants need to be planted in the ditch, bottom of ditch or can they be planted at the top of the ditch somewhere above mean high water level.

    If it's keeping people out rather than a privacy thing why not have a serious barbed wire fence erected your side of the ditch and then plant something prickly as a hedge.

    Buy a bare root wildlife friendly hedge comprising of a mixture species this autumn after having had the barbed wire fence erected this summer.

    You can buy wildlife friendly mixed bare root hedging by the metre.

  • Thanks for the replies everyone, I think I'll try the blackthorn.  Security is the big concern along railway tracks that have been converted to walking paths.  With open access to peoples back yards, it's easy pickings for a thief.  I thought of putting up a barbed wire fence, like Cottage Compost suggested, but a simple bolt cutter could get through that easily enough. 

    Again, thanks for the responses everyone.

  • WateryWatery Posts: 388

    Brian, I didn't even consider burglars.   Very good point.  Hope your blackthorn works.

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