Is this weeding?

We asked a "professional" gardener who lives around the corner to come and do some weeding and tidying in the garden. The day he wanted to come were were not at home. but were horrified when we returned home and saw what  he had done. For some reason, that he is unable to explain, whilst "weeding" he managed to chop down a six foot hollybush, a mature lilac tree, remove a hedge and lop branches (back to the trunk) of another 40 year old tree! He would only say "it'll grow back" but did accept it would take a few years. Apparently it's just a coincidence that the 2 metre wide gap he has created at the side of our garden is adjacent to our neighbours greenhouse. The gardener is good friends with our neighbours.

Any comments/suggestions would be most welcome





  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,606

    If you're satisfied that all you'd told him to do was weeding and tidying, I'd be livid and looking at the Small Claims Court procedures in order to fund replacement plants and a proper gardener to prepare the ground and plant them image

    He might feel he'd be better off apologising and settling 'out of Court'. 

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

  • Bunny ...Bunny ... Posts: 3,455
    I think you've made the suggestion yourself, so stick a big fence/trellis up in the gap near greenhouse and bill it to this professional gardener image
  • Bunny ...Bunny ... Posts: 3,455
    ...also agree with dove
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,606

    Also, take dated photographs now - do you have any of how it looked before the 'gardener' did his worst?

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

  • discodavediscodave Posts: 510

    I would be livid.

    My next door neighbour has a gardener that "comes when she's out" alot of the time. But as I'm home I know he will bill her for several hours work but I have seen him on one occasion going round with a leaf blower for 15 mins, he told her he was there raking up for 3 hours. Needless to say he now comes when shes in, (if he bothers to turn up at all).

    I went on Holiday last year and my next door neighbour who looks after our house took it upon themselves to cut back my ivy (on our joining side wall), that not the problem, we always keep it about a foot from the top of the wall to keep it from growing over onto their conservatory but they had cut it back to 4ft in a straight line from the top, it looked bloody rediculous. Its growing back slowly but surely but will take a good 2 years to get back to where we keep it. 

  • I'd be livid, too. You've been 'had'. I'd let him think you are going to the small claims court even if you do not really intend to (put it in black and white), put up a fence or trellis and plant something fairly quick growing as a temporary infill, then send him an itemised bill. Even better would be a solicitor's letter, but that will cost you money. I had a problem with someone some years ago who sold me stolen property and resisted every attempt to get my money back. Persistence paid off and eventually he repaid fourteen thousand pounds. You have to be more determined than him - but keep your cool. It is not worth wasting a lot of energy on anger.

    Does the neighbour have anything to say?

  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,802

    I am going to be a liitle bit contenious here-was it spelt out to him what you actually wanted doing?-did you stand in the garden and point out things?- or was this just a general instruction to tidy up-he may have thought that is what you wantedimage

    I have done gardening jobs for people and the work and price is agreed beforehand-was this done?image

    As for going out-why??-when you knew he was coming?- or did he just turn up?

    You say professional-as in does he trade as a gardener-or just do jobs on the side?

    I like to get both sides of the story -before rushing to judgement-at the moment we only have oneimage

  • BrummieBenBrummieBen Posts: 459

    If anyone ever does work for us, I'm always at home, mainly so I can see the job is being done correctly. I find it much less hassle than finding later everything has to be undone and started again.

  • marshmellomarshmello Posts: 683

    No, it's not weeding but you should have been around for his first visit. Fault lies with both parties really.

    I'm guessing no contracts outlining what was required of him to do were drawn up ? Not alot legally can be done but you could always enquire - trading standards or CAB maybe able to help.

    Other than asking him to put right, some of the wrong he's caused at his own expense and hope he doesn't start playing stupid games, like - prove it.

    Good luck !!

    Oh, and 'professional my a** '.

  • nightgardennightgarden SW ScotlandPosts: 112

     My first thought Chyperie is to say that I'm really sorry to read what happened to your garden - you must be devastated ... I had a similar but, by comparison, very very minor incident in my garden last year with a man who came to cut the grass. I was at home but even so he (and his dog on my veg patch) managed to do damage before I realised what was happening. He was annoyed when I said he must put the dog in his car and I was annoyed that I had to follow him around to prevent more things being slashed down - how anyone could cut through a line of 6' high sunflowers I'll never know. His mate told me what he thought to be hilarious stories of chopping down mature trees and shrubs - at which point I cut the session short and decided never again.

    I don't think falling out with your neighboyrs or the legal route will get you anywhere as it sounds like it was a verbal agreement rather than a contract. I'd head for the nearest garden centre to cheer myself up. Good luck.


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