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Gorillas in the hedge.

We do fencing. And when we do it we do it, we do it just as we’re asked………..

Here’s a job from back in the summer. Our customer had an established hedge of privet with a couple of elders thrown in for good measure. They wanted the hedge removed and a fence put up. There’s a place for hedges and fences in most gardens but we always listen to what our customers want and then we have a good chat with them over a cup of tea about what the desired outcome is – in this case more space – and then we crack on!

Here we had a front garden that abutted the footpath and road. We made sure that there were no planning or neighbour issues before we started – always good to check as the height and look of what’s there to start with will undoubtedly change and access to the neighbour’s land might be needed as the job gets underway. Our customer wanted the hedge and roots removed and we talked through all the options – from stump grinders to digging the roots out to using a proprietary stump killer.

We agreed that using a digger to get out all of the roots might be a bit unnecessary and that as some of the roots would have undoubtedly spread under the neighbour’s tarmac drive this might cause greater damage. The use of chemicals wasn’t something that our customer felt happy about so we settled on good old, physical hard work!

First thing was to simply cut the hedge down. That didn’t take too long and we then disposed of the cuttings responsibly. Where we can’t compost cuttings and other waste we take it to the local recycling centre where they turn it into garden compost for others to benefit from. As this picture shows someone had tried to kill off the elder in the past – the tell tale signs of drilled holes into which they would have poured a stump killer are evident.

With the hedge down and the line of the fence clear we started to think about where the posts would need to go and marking out our line. That identified that the down pipe at the end closest to the house would need to be altered slightly – and in turn that identified that the soakaway had been blocked by years of mud and crisp packets.

Our customer had a clear idea of the sort of fencing that they wanted – and we sourced that locally from a local timber supplier.

Here’s a pic of the posts, panels and postcrete that were waiting for us one sunny Saturday morning.

Back at the garden we were able to dig most holes quite easily. There were a few where the hole happened to be close to, or right where, one of the elders had been planted. That meant only one thing – time to roll our sleeves up and get the pick axe, all metal spade and lump hammer out of the van!

With the holes dug, posts cut, and the later addition of gravel board fixed – always a good idea to protect the fence where it comes into contact with the ground – we were ready to erect the fence. The end panel needed to be carefully cut to fit and we made sure that in doing so the overall look of the fence wouldn’t be compromised. You can see how we did that in the before and after pic at the end.

On this job the weather broke – yes in August – and we had to leave the fence as working on it was proving difficult on the clay-type soil. The combination of some rain and warmth meant that in little over a week the sole surviving root started to sprout new growth - as you can see below! To resolve that and remain within our original brief – no stump grinder, digger or stump killer - we used our Gorilla Bar.

This is a sturdy metal bar that’s about 4 feet in length and has flattened and sharp chisel-like ends and it’s been one of our best purchases in recent times. It enables us to get right into and under the roots - using it to get out stubborn roots is immensely satisfying – as you might imagine when you look at the final pic.

If your hedges are in need of an overhaul or if your fencing has seen better days and you'd like us to take a look then please get in touch. We'd love to hear from you! You can contact us through our facebook page, at or on 07734 365028

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