Hedges serve property owners as privacy screens from curious passers-by. In most allotment garden settlements, they limit the paths and visually enhance each individual plot. The densely growing shrubs also set visual accents in landscape parks. But hedges are not a fancy replacement for a fence, they serve as a habitat for many animals. For this reason, there are a few things to consider when trimming a hedge. In the following article you can find out what these are, when hedge trimming is strictly forbidden and why hedges in allotment gardens must not exceed a certain height.
Without restrictions, homeowners and allotment gardeners in Germany are only allowed to cut their hedges from October 1st to the end of February. The reason: Between March and September, some native bird species use the densely growing hedge plants as protection in order to first build a nest undisturbed by humans and predators and later raise their young in it. The closing times can be found in Section 39 Paragraph 5 of the Federal Nature Conservation Act (BNatSchG). Accordingly, during this period it is strictly forbidden to "put the hedge on the stick" with hedge trimmers - i.e. to trim it to about 20 centimeters above the ground. In this case, birds and other animals that have sought shelter in this hedge would have to find a new home. From March 1st, hedge trimmers will be taboo. Exception: Gentle shape and grooming cuts. Anyone caught illegally trimming must expect a fine.
Hedges are usually trimmed with hedge trimmers. The fastest and most efficient way to do this is with the electric version. Somewhat more practical, but also a few euros more expensive are models that are battery operated. This is usually not included in the scope of delivery of the hedge trimmer, nor is the matching charger. If you don't have a problem with possible cable clutter and a power connection, you can confidently use the wired and slightly cheaper version. Here's a cable model from Makita. Cutting a hedge with a classic hedge trimmer is much more tedious and time-consuming. You do something for the beach figure at the same time. Thanks to the serrated edge, you can work even more precisely than with the electric models. In addition, the "old-school" hedge trimmer has the great advantage that it can also be used on Sundays without hesitation. A classic hedge trimmer from Gardena is available here.
You can read a current hedge trimmer comparison here.
The following six hedge plants are most common in Germany:
Property owners, especially those who live directly on a street, use hedges primarily as privacy screens. The motto: the higher, the better. After all, who likes to be looked at on their plate at Sunday breakfast? Allotment gardeners, on the other hand, cannot let their hedges sprout at their own discretion. According to the official garden regulations, the privacy screen in allotment gardens must not be higher than 1.50 meters. In some cases only 1.10 meters are allowed for the so-called external enclosures. Exceptions apply to hedges on busy streets or parking lots. If in doubt, a look at the statutes of the allotment garden association helps. Why is the height of hedges regulated? Plots in allotment associations are usually leased relatively cheaply. They are considered green spaces that are accessible to the general public. This does not mean that everyone has free access, but a clear view should be guaranteed - even for small people. The premise: everyone should be able to see the blossoming fruit trees, carefully laid out borders and the grown vegetables.
Many allotment gardeners spend a lot of time tending to their hedges. But only a few people heed an important principle. Hedges should be cut conically, i.e. narrow towards the top. The reason is very simple. The lower branches get significantly less light with a straight cut. In the worst case, they become bald or wither. Therefore the base of each hedge should be about 20 to 30 centimeters wider than the top. Add a layer of mulch to the soil under the hedge. This favors the nutrient balance and pleases numerous microorganisms.
Sources: "My Beautiful Garden"
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