The root of 3: Three plants that look good together: Crataegus monogyna Ilex aquifolium Acer campestre
Sunday 24 August 1997
In this situation, a mixture of native hedgerow species can work well. Hedgerows are an ancient part of the landscape, and the older they are, the more species they contain. There are many to choose from, all with evocative names: cherry-plum, crack-willow, guelder-rose, sweetbrier, spindle and buckthorn.
The hawthorn, Crataegus monogyna, is one of the most common and one of the best deciduous hedgerow shrubs. It was once believed that its creamy- white flowers carried the smell of the Great Plague of London, that its branches furnished the Crown of Thorns and that dreadful consequences would result from bringing its blossom indoors. It has small, lobed leaves, which are the freshest of spring greens when they first unfurl, and its frothy blossom is followed by bright red berries.
In the changing seasonal tapestry of a mixed hedge the familiar, glossy- green, prickly leaves of the holly, Ilex aquifolium, provide a constant, evergreen thread. The tradition of bringing the branches of evergreen trees inside in winter is an ancient one, and holly, in particular, with its red berries, was held as a symbol of fertility and a protection against witchcraft.
The final plant in this trio is the field maple, Acer campestre. Left alone, it can make a small tree, possibly up to 30ft high, but more usually it forms a rounded shrub. It has finely fissured, corky bark, winged seeds and blunt-lobed leaves that turn the brightest yellow of any of our native trees in autumn.
As you might expect of native plants, the hawthorn, holly and field maple are all utterly hardy. They will put up with a wide range of different soils and grow in sun or medium shade. For a good thick hedge, space the young plants about 1.5ft apart in two parallel rows, allowing 1ft between the rows. Water and feed well, especially in the first years.
John the Gardener
Life & Style blogs
Penis size study: what's 'normal' anyway?
What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
International Space Station’s huge size shown in spacewalk image
Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
- 1 Home Office says Nigerian asylum-seeker can’t be a lesbian as she’s got children
- 2 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 3 Japanese island overrun with cats after population explodes
- 4 Apple and Google users being spied on for a decade because of 'Freak' security flaw
- 5 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
£16000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Project Administrator is requ...
£30000 - £35379 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The company is based in Welwyn ...
£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Resource and Recruitment Manage...