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Removing a hedge

we are thinking of removing a hedge at the bottom of our garden and replacing it with a wall or fence and would eventually like to create a vegetable garden and maybe a few fruit trees. Does anyone have any advice (including reasons why we shouldn’t or other alternatives as we know the hedge is important for wildlife)




  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,441
    What is the original hedge made of? If it's Leylandii, I would get rid. If it's hawthorn or quickthorn or holly,  I would keep it. Good for wildlife you want, bad for the ferals you don't want. (Burglars etc) Having been burgled twice, I am very fond of prickly hedges on boundaries.
  • FireFire Posts: 18,121
    Some photos might help with recommendations - seeing how much space you have
  • Sorry I’ve tried to add photos but I think there is an issue with the site at the moment. I’ll try again now- please let me know if you can’t see them. 
  • I should also add, it’s just a field behind us with some sheep in the summer 
  • FireFire Posts: 18,121
    I'm imagining a lovely view beyond the hedge... if only of distance and sheep. Would you have quite a bit of 'borrowed landscape beyond? Large trees? A low mixed native hedge would help with wildlife access (unlike a fence, perhaps). It can provide food, pollen, nesting site and cover. They also provide wildlife corridors, for creatures to move between hunting areas.
    • Blackthorn (Sloe, Prunus Spinosa)
    • Guelder Rose (Viburnum opulus)
    • Holly (Ilex aquifolium)
    • Hazel (Corylus avellana)
    • Field Maple (Acer campestre)
    • Dog Rose (Rosa cannina)
    • Crab Apple (Malus sylvestris)

    This kind of thing.   You can get thornless mixes too.

  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    Check the hedge is not sheltering you from the prevailing wind.
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,993
    If you're keeping the side hedges you could afford to lose the back one which will be much better for your veg beds and fruit trees, unless as Hogweed suggests, the prevailing wind is behind it!
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • Thanks everyone.

    i like the idea of a blackthorn hedge- do you know if is quick to grow or would we be waiting for a bit without any real boundary.

    my other concern is that if there is a lot of rain/snow in winter the field has become a bit waterlogged (though our garden was ok but it was close to coming in) so I’m wondering if we remove the hedge will this make matters worse because the hedge won’t be there to take up water (though I would like to have a few trees and veg beds which might counteract it)
  • FireFire Posts: 18,121
    Someone who grows blackthorn will know. I see estimations of a foot a year. You can buy mature (instant) hedging. This is an example - I don't know the company.
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