Paul's hedgelaying

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April 2017

79 yards hawthorn and hazel hedge, South of England and using live stakes, Little Horwood

There were three different sections of hedge - predominantly hazel and mostly hawthorn sections along the side of the garden which joined up and a hawthorn hedge across the end of the garden which revealed an amazing view beyond once laid. One section was laid with live stakes and supports to support awkward, heavy and brittle stems and the others sections laid South of England style.

1. Hedge at end of garden

End hedge before ...
 

.... and after with client admiring his amazing new view.
 

Same view summer 2017
 

Work underway. The hedge was laid towards the tall hawthorn just to left of centre in the picture from either side.
This gave a strong and stable start to the hedge
 

Technically this was a very challenging section of hedge to lay.
The stems were heavy, old and awkwardly shaped. This one has been secured on the near side by a notch cut in the stump of the previous stem and on the far side by a live stake.
 

Another view showing how this awkward stem has been supported
 

The next stems to be laid will be supported on one side by the live stake further along and on the other by the support I have fashioned from the far side of the previous stump.
 

Making progress.
 

Right side nearing completion
 

Close-up of completed hedge
 

Some dead stakes have been added, but the strength comes from the live supports you can barely see
 

The stem in the foreground is an example of reverse laying.
It has been laid flat to the ground to the right and then laid back on itself to the left.

 

2. Hazel section

Work under way on a predominantly hazel section of hedge ...
 
 

... same section laid. The tall hazel has been laid or cut out apart from one stem which is waiting for the client's car to be moved before I can fell it.
 

Detail showing hazel and hawthorn plus an offcut put in the bottom of the hedge to provide habitat as it rots down
 

Completed South of England hedge, again with some dead wood left underneath for habitat.
 

Hazel section in progress, large hazel stool yet to be tackled...
 

... and after. The hazel stool has been laid in both directions to bulk up the hedge to the right of it which was pretty sparse.
 

 ... same view in summer 2017 ...
 

... same view in summer 2018.
 

Close-up of the large hazel stool. Note how the top stem laid back to the left has had a notch cut in it so that the stake there is in line with the other stakes.
 

Summer 2017 lots of regrowth from the hazel stool already ...
 

... summer 2018 and the same hazel is growing really well. The stool is by the right hand fencepost.
 

General view with work in progress
 

Regrowth, summer 2018.

 

3. Small ash tree section

Centre section with four small ash, before ...
 

... and after. All the stacked wood has come from the hedge ...
 

... and regrowth in summer 2018
 

 

4. Large ash tree section

This section was dominated by two adjacent groups of large ash. The intention was to thin the trees whilst laying the hedge without losing the overall shape ...
 

... the hedge under the ash has been laid and the ash limbed up / thinned ...
 

...view from the field side ...
 

... complete. View along past the tall ash to the end of the hedge.

 

5. Apple tree

In the centre is a super apple tree but it's difficult to make out ...
 

... and after. The apple tree is lovely shape and now you can see it perfectly.
 

Fabulous tree ...
 

... in a lovely setting.