Gardening

Wooded hedge


Question: wooded hedge


Hi, I got the crazy idea of ​​fencing with plants a semi-wooded plot to prevent the escape of the animals present, including some able to dig tunnels under a possible wire mesh that, for a perimeter of 4 km square, would entail a considerable cost, so I thought of transplanting some trees also present in the 100 hectares, placed very close to each other in order to form a living underground barrier but the 1 million dollar question is: which plants do you would they lend to carry out such a project? There would be oaks, pines, maples, elms, poplars, could they live together? Thanks, a salutone.

Wooded hedge: Answer: wooded hedge


Dear Mario,
hedges are an entirely human invention, and this type of cultivation does not always adapt to the life of the plants, especially those in the woods, which in nature are used to taking all the space they want. If the forest that you own is allowed to grow naturally, you will also notice that trees of different species tend to take on similar posture and size, and generally develop a beautiful crown; in addition to this, although many species of trees produce several hundred seeds each year, from these seeds very rarely will they originate seedlings in the area covered by the crown of the "mother" tree; this happens because nature somehow regulates itself, trying to produce plants that can withstand wind and snow well. The only plots where you can see poplars positioned very close (but still not like in a hedge) are those in which they are grown for wood, and in any case they are not allowed to grow out of proportion, and they are cut to size periodically base, to exploit precisely the wood. Italian autochthonous trees, such as poplars, maples, elms, oaks, do not like to have neighbors too close! Decades ago, our great-grandparents settled in the woods and along the canals some specimens of robinia pseudoacacia, a plant native to North America, precisely because this tree tends to develop even where it finds very little space; the result is that several people, for years, have been involved in cutting the locust trees present in our forests, because they grow only in height, producing poles up to 10-15 m high, almost without crown, seem to be perches, totally at the mercy of wind, and make even the most harmless forest dangerous, because they can fall even at the hint of a thunderstorm. Conifers are often used to form hedges, especially tsughe and cypress trees, but fir trees generally do not like to be cultivated all appressate; and in any case, even the cypress hedges tend to perish over the years, in addition to becoming imposing and difficult to manage. You can try to place stumps of elm or hornbeam around the wood (you may find them in your plot, even if you need to look for small ones, because moving a large stump can mean killing them); the stumps are plants left to develop without a single trunk, but allowing all basal suckers to develop; this type of cultivation is used for chestnut trees, elms, hornbeams, and over the years it is possible to increase their size and make them become ever more impressive. Clear that, at planting, it would be appropriate to avoid placing overly close stumps, but over the years they can form, if not quite a hedge, a sort of barrier with spaces, which can act as a deterrent for the escape of the animals. You can see the stumps usually along the banks of the irrigation canals, or at least, I live in Lombardy, and here many canals are still protected and decorated with stumps of various plants; and in the woods near my house, the chestnut groves are all planted with ceppaia.