Hedge work in a heatwave

hedgehorizI need a drone. With a camera. That way it could hover elegantly over this large hedge and you can admire my work.

Because frankly, it looks like a dog’s breakfast every time I tray to snap a shot.  Mixed hedging is never really pretty until it forms a thick dense canopy.  And my hedge is decidedly fluffy as I am allergic to unnecessary pruning.

In a rural setting it just looks silly having a neat hedge.

So mine is fluffy and unkempt and up until today, in danger of dying.  ThHaiti2013is wretched heatwave and drought is really testing my plants.

If you do an internet image search of the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic that’s how I like to imagine my hedge looks from above. One side – Jean Daniel’s the denuded of vegetation paddock where the horses eat everything that doesn’t move.  And my side – the lush planting.


hedgeedgeActually I cannot help but admire just how brilliantly so many of my shrubs are surviving. Of all my hornbeams, only about three or four out of fifty are crispy.  The rest are green and growing.

And the acer campestre hasn’t noticed. But the acer ginnala right beside it (also called the Amur maple – look it up on the internet to see just how stunning a tree it can be) is looking wilty.

Wilty? Is that a word? Wilting even early in the morning, which is not a good sign. It needs a remedy. Or a move back to the Amur River in Russia from whence it came.  It’s possibly a sub species of the Tartar Maple. Don’t you love the distraction of the tree encyclopedias?

But back to the remedy.  With a hose in one hand and a beady eye out, I can see thedgearturweedinghat quite a few of these hedge shrubs are loathing this weather.

I have put a few buckets of water over some cornus that are crispy. The two acer ginnalas ae now hopefully reviving.  And there were two eleagnus dropping leaves. The buddleja is stricken. Actually I think it is going to come out this autumn. It has grown way too well in the space. And is now out of keeping with the rest of the plants in the hedge underneath the oak tree.

And I just caught the nursery bed of jostaberries that I heeled in last Christmas to keep them for Paul and Alice’s autumn planting once their house gets built and their garden is no longer a building site.

They are hidden behind the hedgemulberyhedge right behind the potting shed and were screened by some fantastic tall hornbeams which look brilliant and not in need of any help. Hence my neglect. I never climb through the hedge to the other side.

Artur loves the hose – he keeps a careful gaze on the progress of the snaking thing in his territory.  He was actually so cross with it, that I had to resort to trickery to get him to keep still. hedge artur

If you have ever had cats, you will know this one. I casually dropped my kneeling mat onto the path (in the shade) then walked away.  It took no more than three minutes for him to casually leap on it and claim it for his own.

That gave me a good half hour of deep soaking of the trees on the west side of the property before he got bored and came and bothered me deep in the nursery bed.

Twice he managed to plonk down just where I was trying to water.  We glared at each other and for once, I won the death stare battle.  He has stalked off and gone to sleep in the shade garden. And I have filled the barrels around the potting shed so I can dump buckets of life saving water on any more shrubs that ail in the next week.