Breckland Birder

Breckland Birder
Crossbill in Breckland, Norfolk Photo by Paul Newport

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Hedge planting.

In June of this year we moved into our bungalow in Watton, Norfolk.  I really do miss our previous home and the large garden I had which was created with wildlife in mind.  However, the house was a bit to big for us, and with our son and daughter in their own homes now it was decided that we should look at downsizing.
We have an attractive enclosed back garden in our new home with some wildlife friendly plants, however, the border along the length of the back fence was empty of plants although it was evident that some large conifers were there by the buried stumps.  These conifers were felled sometime ago as the roots were dead and quite easy to remove.
And so to the project.  At either corner I wanted a tree, one corner already a young Ash tree, the other I planted a lovely Rowan.  I chose native hedging plants for the border, these comprised 10 Hawthorn, 10 Blackthorn, 6 Dog Rose, and 10 Elder.  My idea is to create a mix of species and to this end I planted 2 Hawthorn, 2 Blackthorn, a Dog Rose, and so on.  The Elders were given their own space as these would not do too well within the fast growing thorny hedging.
This mix of native hedging will provide a breeding habitat for a range of bird species, as well as a feeding station and roost site, additionally, a wide range of insect species will be attracted to this habitat.
I am hoping that my hedge will provide a visual spectacle in spring with the various flowers blossoming and an equally colourful fruit larder in autumn for both resident and migrant birds.


  1. Stick a couple of Guelder Rose [Viburnum opulus] in that hedge, too...
    Oh, and a Field Maple... wonderful colour and texture all year round from both...
    and how about a thornless Blackberry...
    tamer than a wild one and not so ready to run rampant...
    and a good excuse to stand by the hedge and nibble healthy fruit while you watch the birds!

  2. Hi Tim
    I have actually thought about Guelder Rose and I 'youtubed' an article on taking cuttings of this beautiful plant...I might try this. Thornless Blackberry sounds interesting also. I got my plants from a 'Native Hedgerow' specialist, however, I think there will be a sense of achievement if i can take cuttings from a wild Breckland Guelder Rose....they seem to take quite readily.
    You mention having a nibble on fruit Tim...I often 'top and tail and de-seed' Rose Hips...they are very tasty too.