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Author Topic: Hedge cutting  (Read 1419 times)

PaulStaffs

  • Joined Sep 2021
Hedge cutting
« on: December 18, 2023, 08:15:24 pm »
Hi everyone
Planted a hedge a couple of years ago with about 400 alder whips. I haven't trimmed them at the side or top yet. I'm a little nervous about trimming them height wise but they are about the level i'd like them to be. Is it as simple as topping them all the way along or is that going to kill the hedge? I almost the started the job today and then decided i'd put the question out there before i undo alot of hard work..!

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Hedge cutting
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2023, 02:10:45 am »
I suppose it depends on what kind of hedge you want.  We planted about a kilometer of hedging with the intention of laying it all.  50 metres and a bad case of hedgelayers elbow later we bought a tractor hedging attachment.  A laid hedge is a thing of beauty and can be fairly impenetrable to livestock eventually.  A mechanically slashed hedge looks awful until the leaves grow back but ends up solid enough.  Our hedge cutter bar leaves the hedge looking nice straight away but is quite slow and you have to clear up all the trimmings.


How far apart have you planted your alders?  Are they in a double row or single? Do you want a dense hedge or an open one?  Will you be using a hand held trimmer or a tractor driven one?
My experience is with mixed native tree hedges, both ancient and newly planted.  The basic idea if you are not laying the hedge is to make the hedge slightly wider at the bottom than at the top to allow equal light to reach the sides, otherwise the bottom tends to die out.  If you lay your hedge then as it regrows you still trim it into that shape.
If you just want a basic garden style hedge, then trim it to a bit shorter than you want the final height to allow for annual growth.  Alder grows quite quickly so I would suggest cutting it a foot shorter than you want the ultimate height and width. You won't kill it. The wider you have your hedge the more use it is to wildlife. and some bird species need a hedge much taller than most are cut.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

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arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow: where 2nd-home owners rule !
Re: Hedge cutting
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2023, 02:38:43 pm »
I can only agree with Fleecewife - alder (much like beech) is OK with being hedge-trimmed.

 

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