The many benefits of hedges by Rachel Hammond

hedge landscape

Following all the storms, there will be many of us with fences down – and trees down.  The issue with fencing is that because it’s impermeable, the wind hits it and meets a barrier.

Hedges however, are somewhat permeable – allowing some wind to pass through – whilst also creating a barrier to most of the wind.  Their permeability and ability to absorb a lot of the wind makes them far more efficient than fencing as a wind break, and still give the benefits of fencing – privacy and security, particularly if using thorned plants, such as blackthorn, hawthorn, pyracantha.

Hedgerows also offer the following benefits:

  • habitat, shelter & food for birds, insects and mammals (whereas fences often prevent wildlife like hedgehogs from travelling between gardens to find food and mates)
  • windbreaks for livestock & plants
  • microclimate creation
  • living boundaries
  • continuous green corridors

Cost wise, it stacks up too, because timber prices have increased so much that buying mature hedging can work out similar to fencing costs and with less labour needed to plant.

You will also benefit next time it’s windy and you don’t get a fence down.

Win for biodiversity, the environment and your pocket!

Rachel Hammond

Rachel Hammond from Newbury is a landscape architect, urban designer, gardener and master composter, specialising in edible landscapes, food production and biodiversity planting. She has worked in the sustainability sector for the last 20 years, always growing her own food. She now runs edge, a non-profit which educates on and designs urban food production systems and ecological farming practices.

Follow Rachel here:

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