Archive for September, 2010

Hedge Trimming

We’re at hedge trimming time of year – the birds have flown their nests and the growth is slowing. Most species are trimmed at this time of year – the weather is still mild enough that the fresh cuts won’t be exposed to autumn/winter frosts and yet the plants have virtually stopped growing so you won’t be trimming it only to need to do it again in a month’s time.

Some tips

  • try to trim the hedge so that it’s slightly A shaped – it improves the stability of the hedge (so that the weight of winter snow is less likely to tip it over) and allows rainfall and sunshine to get to all parts of the plant
  • start by pruning the top flat – either using your eye (stand back occasionally to check the levels) or put up canes and a string as a cutting guide
  • make sure you brush off the trimmings to prevent fungal diseases as the trimmed stems rot
  • get your shears sharpened once a year (our local ironmonger only charges £5)
  • if you’re using electric trimmers, make sure they’re plugged into to a socket with a circuit breaker so they’ll cut out if you cut the cable. Keep the cable well away from the blade and wear googles and tough gloves
  • after pruning, water and mulch the hedge, on both sides if you can, after you’ve cut it (not Yew, Box or Lavender which don’t like to have wet roots)
  • if it sounds like a pallava, think how horrible a job painting a fence is – hedging is just so much better than fencing! We would say that wouldnt we, but it’s true

And finally, we can’t take our own advice on hedge trimming because our mature Escallonia hedge is flowering again even – here’s a photo taken on 21 Sept. It’s supposed to flower in June/July but here’s the evidence that with the right weather, it can repeat flower. Gorgeous!

Escallonia - The second flowering of the year

Escallonia – The second flowering of the year – picture taken 21st September 2010

June

Staff Update

Hello to all regular readers of this blog – and apologies for an absence of blogs for such a long time.   It’s not the absence of things to write about – quite the opposite!   We’ve been using our summer period (which is a bit quieter than our hectic bare root and root ball winter season) to relocate the office so that we’re now on the nursery itself – right amongst the plants – and to build up the team.

Paul Shipley joined us as Managing Director. He’s got a tremendous business background and we’re delighted to have him in charge.   As a result of Paul’s recruitment, I’m going to spend a lot more time on marketing (which has suffered from a lack of attention lately – not enough blogs for a start) and Dave will be freed up a bit to concentrate on the financial management of the business which becomes even more important as we grow from a start up 5 years ago to the substantial and professional business we are today – and the bigger and better business we aspire to be.

Another recent addition to the team is Jamie who’s energy and commitment to learn everything quickly has given us all a boost and we look forward to providing him with terrific career opportunities in the years to come.

Of course, whilst we’re delighted to have new people bringing new skills and experiences to the business, we remain grateful to our existing terrific team for their continuing hard work and enthusiasm – Stephen (advice/sales), Karen (advice/sales and very large quotes), and Paul H (despatch enquiries and undertaking advice/sales training.

 Left to right Dave, Jamie, Paul H, Paul S, Karen, June, Stephen.

Left to right Dave, Jamie, Paul H, Paul S, Karen, June, Stephen.

So that you can put faces to the names, here we all are just outside our office in the Pyracantha area. Left to right Dave, Jamie, Paul H, Paul S, Karen, June, Stephen.

June