The Council of Perfection dictates many things particularly when pruning is mentioned.  However, the Council of Perfection does not work full-time in a demanding job and over commit itself to too many things in the evenings so it will have to except my lackadaisical approach to the hedges.

There are two hedges in the front garden both planted by myself to give privacy.  Between myself and my neighbours there is a beech hedge which really has reached its maximum height and I think needs reducing a little – maybe next year.  It dips at the end because when the hedge was planted some of the plants did not take and had to be replaced the following autumn.

I am a little wary of the hedge trimmer and find it quite awkward to use so my youngest son took charge of the beech hedge.  The sides could be a little tighter and neater as could the top but its a vast improvement on how it was before we started and it will do for another year.


The laurel hedge goes along the front of the garden and was planted one Christmas Eve before I took over the annual responsibility of the family Christmas dinner.  Now here is where the Council of Perfection would get very cross with me as they dictate that you are meant to use secateurs for broad-leaved hedges such as Laurel.  This is because if you cut the leaves with a strimmer the cut edges will brown and look unsightly.  I have done this ever since the hedge was planted but this year it was too warm and life is too short and to be honest the hedge needed it a more drastic cut so I did the whole hedge with the shears.  I have really cut it back hard which will benefit it in the long-term even if it has a brown tinge for a while.

Again the hedge dips, this time around the birch, this is mainly because the laurel hasn’t grown as strongly by the tree, no doubt because the tree takes up most of the moisture.   I decided to make a feature out of it and I think the dip really shows the white of the birch bark off better.

And yes we didn’t clear up after ourselves very well despite sweeping and raking there are leaves on the road and also along the border in the front of the hedges but the leaves can rot down and there are more things in life to worry about.  So a dull and hot job is done for another year and the pruning have been taken to the dump and we patted ourselves on the back and had a well-earned cuppa.