Pimp my Thuja

When we first moved into our house, massive thuja hedges encased the garden on three sides, lending the unsettling feel of a maximum security prison to our outdoor space.

We removed the hedges on either side of the house with the understanding and approval of our neighbours. Our neighbours to the back, however, wanted the hedge to remain as a screen between us and them.

In order to brighten up these depressing and charmless shrubs, we planted a load of climbers; honeyscukle, clematis, and wild vines. These have taken to their thujen scaffolding and raced up, hanging down like a green, flowery curtain in the summer. In the autumn, the wild vine leaves turn the most incredible red, a few examples of which are posted below.

In a few weeks the leaves will all be gone and only the thujen will remain. Then it will be time to cover their branches with bird feeders so that they will be carpeted in blue tits, jays, woodpeckers and robins for the winter.

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