Quote from a Guardian piece about Gillian Anderson, of The Fall, the X-Files etc:
Anderson was born in Chicago, but her parents moved to London when she was two and she lived in the north London borough of Haringey until she was 11, while her father studied film. The family later moved back to the US and settled in Michigan. Anderson – who had been a bit of a punk at school and was once voted “most likely to get arrested” by her classmates – moved to New York to try to make it as an actor.
London, though, remained a draw (she speaks with an English accent). “Even after moving to America, I always had a yearning for England,” she said in an interview last year. “I’d come back and smell the hedgerows; it always felt like some part of my insides were being pulled back here.”
Hedge Britannia has been nominated for Inspirational Book of the Year at the Garden Media Awards, which is nice as it means I get to go to a posh lunch where they do the awards.
Will need to start practising my “not disappointed, really pleased the other book won” expression.
There’s more information about the prize here.
This is Steve Wheen’s blog, with some nice pictures of the miniature gardens he has planted in potholes.
Scotland is finally bringing in some legislation on high hedges - on the whole this is a good thing. The legislation in England and Wales hasn’t been perfect – a lot of people are put off by the charges, which vary wildly around the country. Far less people have used the legislation that expected, partly because the charges are a deterrent. And there are problems with “staging” where a very tall hedge can’t be cut down to size if it will kill it.
However the bill has established a situation where it is legally recognised that hedges can be detrimental to neighbour’s “quiet enjoyment of their homes” and this has led to quite a few cases being settled amicably. So overall, it is a positive thing, even if it doesn’t always work smoothly.
There’s no such thing as a “bad hedge” but there are some pretty irresponsible hedge-owners out there. And there are also people who didn’t realise how high their leylandii would grow and now can’t afford to get them trimmed by tree surgeons. It’s a complicated situation, but I think the Scottish parliament, following the campaign by ScotHedge and others, is probably doing the right thing.
I was on Five Live earlier talking to Peter Allen about this issue, which was fun, although mostly we seemed to end up talking about whether copper beech or hawthorn is the better hedge and similar stuff.
I went to play crazy golf with my daughter in Broomfield Park, Palmers Green yesterday – I was rather taken by the hedges that surround and divide the course, so here are a few pictures:
I’m going to visit my friends Alice and Pete in Cambridge this weekend. Alice has sent me some directions to their house, and I note it has reached the stage where people include interesting hedges in their directions for me – which makes perfect sense to me. So Alice has sent me this interesting hedge which I will pass on the way to their house if I manage to follow the directions correctly.
This is from Emily Ledder, Chair of Hedgelink, which is a rather useful organisation:
“Hedgelink, (www.hedgelink.org.uk) which is the partnership that brings everyone interested in hedgerows together, to share knowledge and ideas, to encourage and inspire, and to work with farmers and other land managers to conserve and enhance our hedgerow heritage, is holding an exciting new International Symposium ‘Hedgerow Futures’. The meeting will bring together hedgerow researchers and managers on 3-5 September 2012 at the University of Stafforshire to consider several themes including biodiversity, management and sustainability. For more info please visit
It might be an event too good to miss for any hedgey sorts who visit your blog.”
Just linking to a rather interesting blog post I stumbled over this morning…
“As I stood there in the garden, watching off road fork-lifts deposit yews taller than my head into a pre-dug trench, while internally debating how minutely kinked they should be to make the vibes more ‘ancient boundary’ and less ‘green garage wall’, I realised that Chelsea is entirely about gardening. Just not gardening for poor people.”
These two are from a street in North Acton – I like both because they combine a precise cut, which has obviously been done with care, with slightly random design styles.
Combining the battlement hedge with chess piece chic, Alice Through the Looking Glass in suburban miniature.
This one’s a bit more sinuous, looks a bit like a serpent, or possibly a section of intestine?
Just to link to this lovely series of pictures (and descriptions) of the hedgerows in lanes and fields close to the edge of Dartmoor, from the Hermitage blog.
Well worth a look especially if, like me, you are stuck somewhere a bit more urban and feel like taking a bit of vicarious pleasure in the countryside, as seen through someone else’s eyes…