Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Box and Derby Day

Box hedges only need cutting once a year.  If you have any fussy shaped topiary you could be snipping at it non-stop to keep it tightly trimmed.  The downside to that is that if you keep cutting into 'trees' they are weakened by it and become more susceptible to infection from bugs and diseases.

The traditional day to cut any box hedge has always been Derby Day which is the first week in June and the 'rule' is they should always be cut by July.  This is so the new wood gets a chance to harden before the autumn and therefore survive the winter frosts better.

Sometimes it is good to break rules.

My hedge is not being cut at all this year.  Thanks to its over-cut last year by the gardener I had at that time, it took a bit of a beating.  It is not the healthiest specimen in the first place as it stands with its feet, pretty much, in concrete.  Our patio was haunched up with upended slabs set in large amounts of concrete.  It looked pretty ugly and the hedge is specifically there to hide that.

So, as I said, in a ton of concrete and with its back to a slab of concrete which must fry it in hot weather and then attacked with a chain saw.  It needs a good long break and a chance to put on new growth unhindered, so that's what it will get this year.

It will always look very lopsided on the garden side because our garden slopes by two feet across its diagonal and the hedge is cut to be a foot or so above the patio and looking level on that side.  The patio has now become the conservatory but the hedge and the principal remains.

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