hedges

Discussion in 'Planting, growing, nurturing Plants' started by groen, May 8, 2012.

  1. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    What sort of plants make the best hedge to keep wild boar, rabbits, etc out of a mediterrenean garden?? (situated in Tuscan hills)
     
  2. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    Hedges wont keep rabbits out of anything.
    My suggestion with these is to learn how to either trap or shoot them and see them as a dietary resource, plus fluffy slippers for winter.

    What methods were traditionally used to keep out the pigs in your area?
     
  3. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    mmm... the owners are vegetarian, though, and don't like to kill...
     
  4. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    Something really spiky and tough? Cacti / succulents? Pineapples? A really spiky palm tree? It's tricky for me because I've never lived in a Mediterranean climate so I don't know what plants to suggest exactly.
     
  5. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    Cacti is a bit dangerous around kids, but I like the idea of the pineapples! won't keep the boars out though.
    There's a good hedge that we see everywhere, but I don't know the name - it's a dark green small leave with small, hard, bright orange berries. That could work well with an inner row of pineapples...
     
  6. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    English Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus) seems to work here against Elk.
     
  7. labradel

    labradel Junior Member

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    rabbits love to hide and harbour in just about anything prickly the first comment about hedges not stopping rabbits is 100% correct wire mesh or a solid fence is the best if the materials are available
     
  8. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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    You could hide wire inside a hedge too if you wanted a softer look.
     
  9. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    Thanks for all the replies! We were thinking of using a low mesh, also folded onto the ground so that the rabbits can't dig underneath. Then an attractive, but strong, living hedge.
     
  10. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    That's interesting: I just found a site that suggested 'Laurus Nobilis' - bay laurel.
    also yew and buxus (which would be a bit too low).
     
  11. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    That's interesting: I just found a site that suggested 'Laurus Nobilis' - bay laurel.
    also yew and buxus (which would be a bit too low). :y:
     
  12. cottager

    cottager Junior Member

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    These are all slow growing, strong-trunk plants (buxus grows slowly, but can get very large and strong, in a very large number of years). Strong-trunked plants, planted closely, work well for large/strong animals.

    For rabbits, it's all about rabbit fencing (1 metre up, 1/2 metre skirt outside the boundaries) ... and get rid of the residents (no point fencing if you don't plan this). Pretty growth over the fence is nice, the fence itself is required. (Slight aside ... a ridiculous idea, perhaps, but rabbits might not be able to get through a thick thicket of closely grown bamboo ... I've never seen them achieve that.)
     
  13. adiantum

    adiantum Junior Member

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    Bamboo will need regular irrigation in that climate...be sure to stick with clumping bamboo (such as Bambusa species) which can be set in a dense hedgerow that might, eventually, grow dense enough to be critter-proof. Don't use runners (Phyllostachys, etc.) or they will be everywhere!
    If the land is open, you could try electric fence. The lowest wires need to be at the nose height of whatever critter you're after, unless there's a ground wire too, dragging the ground (which would be a good idea in a dry climate) Be sure to use the high-speed fence chargers that won't start fires! For the pigs, you might need to bait the wire with little foil tags here and there with peanut butter or something else smeared on....critter gives it a lick and gets a really good shock, won't try again for months! (This will work for anything...deer, goats....)
    A proper thorn hedge, like pyracantha (which is the shrub I think you're describing, or else some kind of hawthorn) is a long term project and many people set up a fence first and let the hedge slowly grow up into it and replace it. Basically you whack tall shoots half way through and bend them down at the cut, and tuck them in. The top goes on living and the stub below the cut sprouts up. Every year or two you whack and bend ("laying" the hedge) and it keeps getting denser and denser. I've done it with all kinds of things...oak, elm, crabapple, sweetgum, etc. If vines or brambles grow up in it, so much the better. But this, while maybe being able to exclude the hogs when mature, will just make an ideal refuge and habitat for the rabbits! It's mainly a technique to keep cows and sheep in, not wild things out....
     
  14. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    That's very helpful advice. They have electric fencing at the moment, and we're planning to keep it there only until the hedge is strong and secure.
    Yes: pyracantha - that's the one!! Thanks!! ;)
     
  15. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    Would a bougainvillea hedge be strong enough to keep out the wild boar?
     
  16. adiantum

    adiantum Junior Member

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    Ah, so you're warm enough to grow bougainvillea? That can be one scary thorny plant! Yeah, go for it! The challenge will be to keep it low enough and dense enough so that the lower branches don't shade out and die, leaving empty space under the canopy that pigs could slip through. They're pretty determined! Maybe plant densely and shear, like a privet hedge?
     
  17. groen

    groen Junior Member

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    I hope so... It should certainly be warm enough in summer, but it does get quite cold, with snow, in winter.
    Sounds like we'll have quite a job keeping out the boar!
     
  18. adiantum

    adiantum Junior Member

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    Bougainvillea will kill back with even a fairly light frost. But as long as it comes back from the base, which it might, especially if mulched, the dead stems will be just as thorny as the new ones and last for quite a while. Might be a case of the problem being the solution for keeping the bougainvillea low to the ground.
     

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