Other Styles of Hedgelaying
The Devon style of hedgelaying is quite distinctive. The main stock barrier is often the bank on which the hedge stands. This means
that the hedge can be laid so the pleachers are at a very acute angle and the finished hedge is very low and tight to the top of the bank.
There are many other styles of hedge that don't have a bank and so laying them involves making more of a barrier using the pleachers.
The photographs below were taken at the National Championships in 2010 and show the various styles used in that competition.
The "Midland Bullock" hedge is designed to enclose large animals and resist them pushing against it. The finished hedge is about four foot six inches (140cm)
high. Stakes, cut from the hedge, are driven into the ground about eighteen inches (450mm) apart behind the main line of stems. The pleachers are laid between the stakes and the brush is
placed on one side of the finished hedge. Hazel binders are used in a barley-twist pattern to support the top ofthe stakes.
The brushy side of the hedge is used to contain the livestock while the pleacher side would normally be used initially for crops.
This is a double brush hedge supported by cut timber stakes driven in about thirty inches (750mm) apart at a 35° angle slanting back against the
angle of the pleachers. Dead wood is incorporated in the hedge to protect regrowth from grazing. Hazel binds are used to support the top of the stakes.
The Derbyshire style also uses cut timber stakes placed thirty to thirty six inches apart (750mm-920mm) . They are driven in vertically on the brush side of the
stool line but, unlike other styles, no bindings are used for additional support of the stakes. The finished hedge is trimmed to give an overall height of four feet (120cm). The soil at the foot of the hedge
is loosened and dug over shallowly to remove weeds and encourage regrowth from near the base. Livestock is normally placed on the brush side of the finished hedge.
Lancashire & Westmorland
Stakes are driven in about eighteen inches (450mm) apart on alternate sides of the hedge. The pleachers are laid between the stakes at an angle
of about 45° and some are woven around the stakes to support them. The finished hedge is trimmed and squared to a finished height of at least
three feet six inches (110cm).
Sawn timber stakes are driven in about three foot six inches (110cm) apart and the pleachers are laid around them. The stakes are supported along the top
by a nailed on rail, also of sawn timber.
South of England
Stakes cut from the hedge are driven in about eighteen inches (450mm) apart down the centre line of the hedge. The pleachers are laid around them with brush
on both sides of the finished hedge. The tops of the stakes are secured with hazel binders.
Stakes are driven in on both side of the hedge line and the pleachers are laid at a shallow angle between the row of stakes. Some are laid outside the
stakes and then back into the hedge to support the stakes. A quantity of dead wood is included in the finished hedge to thicken it.