My mini hedge.

In my previous post I mentioned that I must take some hardwood cuttings from the field maples, Acer campestre, which are in the garden, so that I can make a hedge, which hopefully can eventually be planted at the left hand edge of the woodland.

Field maple, Acer campestre

This tree has branches sweeping down to the ground so I thought it could do with a bit of pruning anyway. The books say, look for branches that are the same thickness of a pencil, ok, I found a few here so started snipping.

Acer campestre, Field Maple

In just a couple of minutes I had 10 shoots that were approximately the right thickness, although some of my twigs were thicker than others. The lower side shoots were cut off ready for planting.

Trench with sand at the bottom

I decided to sacrifice just part of one of my raised beds in the veggie garden, dug a trench, in fact I needed 2, and put silver sand at the bottom to aid drainage.

Cuttings Acer campestre

There we are, 10 hardwood cuttings, my mini hedge just waiting now to be a proper hedge. That’s all I can do, now it is up to nature to do the rest! I should be able to tell you next year if they are successful or not. All it took was 15 minutes of my time and this hedge didn’t cost a penny!

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26 Responses to My mini hedge.

  1. Sounds like a great long-term plan (I stress long term ) and I admire your resolve. Good luck with the whole project.

  2. wellywoman says:

    You’ve reminded me I should be taking some hardwood cuttings too. I’m planning on trying some roses. I’m not the most patient of people but it is lovely to get something for free. 😉

    • Pauline says:

      Nearly all my Bonica roses WW,were done from hardwood cuttings, just one plant was bought originally. I too love to get free plants for the garden.

  3. Oh, good luck with that Pauline, such a wonderful thing to grow your own hedge from cuttings. Your sacrifice of the raised bed made me smile because I currently have about a dozen myrtle seedlings and plants occupying one of mine while I mess about with the fence line in the front garden!!

    • Pauline says:

      The beauty of hardwood cuttings Janet, is that I don’t have to do anything else until next autumn. I’ve done them before so hopefully they will be successful, I hope yours are too!

  4. Christina says:

    good luck with your hedge; I don’t see why you shouldn’t be successfull so I’m looking forward to seeing the results next year.

    • Pauline says:

      Let’s hope they are successful Christina, they should be if I just leave them alone until next autumn. Hopefully I will be planting them out next winter so that at some time in the future I will have a hedge which has lovely yellow autumn tints.

  5. rusty duck says:

    I should do this too, so easy. And then you can ignore them. The trick is remembering where you left them, so under your nose is a very good plan.

  6. Cathy says:

    You make it sound so easy, Pauline – which of course it is, if they take, and if they don’t you can always take some more cuttings! It amazes me that twiggy cuttings like this do root – Mother Nature is indeed a very clever woman 😉

    • Pauline says:

      It is easy Cathy, in the past it has always worked, so hopefully this time will be no different. But as you say, if they don’t succeed , then there is always time to do it again. Nature is wonderful, any sort of cutting seems amazing to me, but twigs just stuck in the ground – its a miracle!

  7. pbmgarden says:

    Pauline, this is such a good idea. I’d like to try it with some of my gardenias and camellias. Susie

    • Pauline says:

      Go for it Susie, you have nothing to lose! I think it is wonderful that we are able to make new plants from such unlikely looking twigs.

  8. So far my experiments with taking cuttings are going well and I want to try more so your post was interesting to read. I have yet to take hardwood cuttings and will look forward to seeing how your cuttings progress Pauline. Is fall the best time to do this or does spring work as well?

    • Pauline says:

      Jennifer, I’ve never tried hard wood cuttings in the spring, but who knows, maybe they will take. I think late spring/ early summer is the time for cuttings of the new soft growth. I’m thinking that you are probably covered in snow in the winter, so maybe you could put them round the edge of a biggish pot of compost and keep them under cover, do you think that would work or maybe they would be ok under your snow?

  9. Kate says:

    I’ll be waiting for the results of your mini hedge. But I’m sure that it will grow beautiful 🙂

    • Pauline says:

      Thanks Kate, we’ll have to wait a good 12 months before we know if they have been successful, I don’t expect them all to take but hopefully over half will. Thanks for leaving a message, it’s good to hear from you.

  10. Wendy says:

    It is a lovely project to plant a hedge and then, as others have said, watch nature take over. I look forward to seeing your hedge thrive. We’re planting hedges too, but everything has to be protected from rabbits or our sheep, so I’ve just had to put spirals around mine.

    • Pauline says:

      Wendy, we used to have rabbits that took up residence in the garden, in one of the Devon banks, they ate every new plant that I planted, the more expensive the price tag, the more they ate it! Then neighbours moved in who had cats and the cats soon caught all the babies and the adults moved away. Hopefully they will stay away. We’ll have to wait and see if the hedge will survive, but I can’t think of a reason why it shouldn’t, I will just have to be patient!

  11. Angie says:

    Have never tried hardwood cuttings. You’ve made it look so easy. I need to find a candidate now 😉

  12. Anna says:

    Look forward to seeing photos of twiggy magic in the future Pauline. A bit like bare rooted roses it’s amazing to see such cuttings morph into new plants 🙂

    • Pauline says:

      Let’s hope it all works Anna. It worked with the rose Bonica, which were all grown from hardwood cuttings from the one plant that I bought, so hopefully the field maple will be the same.

  13. I admire thrifty gardening, but I fear I’m not very good with small plants. You will certainly have something to be proud of when the hedge is grown. Thanks for sharing your method!

    • Pauline says:

      Marian, it won’t be he end of the world if they don’t succeed, we’ve lived here for 23 yrs without a hedge at that end of the woodland, I just thought it would be nice to finish it off!

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