Hedgerows are a common feature of UK landscapes, but less familiar in other regions. There is a huge difference between a wild and diverse hedgerow and the mono-crop hedges that are more common in suburban and urban settings. There are a huge range of reasons why incorporating mixed hedgerows in agricultural or garden settings is a great idea.
A mixed hedgerow is a common feature of permaculture design. It is a diverse collection of trees, shrubs and other plants. A hedgerow can include a wide range of plant species. Of course, the species should be chosen to suit the climate, soil type, topography and requirements of a particular site. Species can be carefully selected to provide the widest possible range of benefits.
Hedgerows can divide a property from its neighbouring plots. They can be used within a site too – to fulfil particular functions or to divide certain parts of a site.
A mixed hedgerow can:
- sequester carbon, and aid in climate change mitigation and adaptation.
- serve as a wind-break and create more sheltered zones.
- help as part of schemes designed to retain water in a landscape.
- include nitrogen fixing pioneer species to restore a degraded ecosystem.
- provide greater privacy or screen unsightly views.
- offer some shade for other growing areas.
- mitigate air pollution, noise and smells from nearby roads etc..
- include edible fruits, berries etc…
- provide additional yields such as fuel, constructional timber, crafting materials etc..
- give shelter, food and habitat for a huge range of wildlife species. And connect across landscapes to create wildlife corridors.
No matter where you live, hedgerows of some kind can enhance your site and be utilised in a wide range of different ways.
I can help you develop designs for hedgerows with plants suited to your climate zone and site. If you would like to create hedgerows on your site, please do get in touch.