A lot of my time is spent in the office, so it was nice to get out and on site and organise hedge planting this week.
We’ve had lots of snow recently and planting shouldn’t be done if the ground or soil around the plants is frozen, but fortunately the snow and freezing conditions have held off allowing us to plant a 60 metre long Yew hedge. It’s part of the landscaping of a 17 acre site at a school in London.
These root-balled trees are only available when they’re dormant from October to March and are best planted in early winter. This allows them time to settle in and extend their root systems ready for the next growing season.
One of the big advantages is that they’re less expensive than shrubs in containers, so the clients get good value.
Whilst we look for good quality foliage, the roots are also an important part of the plant. To give the plant some extra help we’ve incorporated a product called rootgrow containing microrhyzal funghi, into the soil around the roots [to be completely effective the fungi must be in contact with the roots at planting time].
These clever little fungi form a symbiotic relationship with the plant, obtaining sugars from it and in return extending the root area of the plant. This extended root system will as a greater capacity to absorb nutrients and moisture from the surrounding soil, so the plants will cope better in dry weather.
Structural planting The hedge is already 1.8 metres tall, and as it grows it will be clipped to form a smart hedge with crisp formal lines, screening the playing field from the car-park beyond.
Hedges are an important element of the structural planting in any garden:
they form boundaries,
compartmentalise different areas of a garden,
screen ugly views
are used by nesting birds
provide a framework that’s visible in winter when many of the leaves and flowers of decorative plants are no longer there.
This is a large site, but they can be used just as effectivly in a garden of any size.
I hope that this gives you some ideas for your garden.
images: Jill Anderson.