Sources and bibliography
Sources suitable as reference works on hedges are clearly indicated; some of these books cover hedging only incidentally.
|Title and publisher
Partridge Press 1987
|Beautifully produced book in the form of a journal describing a particular hedge in West Wales throughout the year. Marvellous illustrations throughout by Michael Woods
|Hedges for Farm and Garden
Faber & Faber 1950
|Excellent book. Large section on farm hedges. Also covers fences, gates, stiles, stone and turf hedges. Out of print and difficult to find!
|Brooks, Alan and Agate, Elizabeth
The best practical guide to hedgelaying. Also covers planting and establishment. Updated and much improved in 1998 with lots more information on regional styles of hedgelaying. I suppose I should declare an interest as I submitted content for the final edition (on a voluntary basis!), particularly in respect of working with volunteers and for the description and schematic of South of England of binding. Out of print, but you can get an electronic copy from TCV - see here
|Nature by the Roadside
EP Publishing 1977
|Small section on hedges.
|Hedgerows and Verges
Allen & Unwin 1987
|Authoritative and fascinating academic study.
|A Guide to Countryside Conservation - Britain's Rural Heritage
WI Books 1989, 160 pages
|Includes a chapter on hedgerows.
National Hedgelaying Society
|Good practical guide. Very inexpensive. Gives more detail than BTCV on different hedging styles.
|Hedge Laying and Fencing
|A practical guide for the smallholder. Covers hedgelaying in some detail, also chapters on planting, fencing and walling
|The Countryman at Work
Architectural Press 1947
|Originally a series of articles in The Architectural Review. Mainly notable for the author's illustrations. Short chapters on hedging, hurdle making and the woodman.
|Fields & Hedgerows - A Nature Guide
Crowood Press 1985, 128 pages
|Emphasis is on flora and fauna throughout.
|Le Sueur, A.D.C
|Hedges, Shelterbelts and Screens
Country Life 1951
|Good chapter on agricultural hedges including description of hedgelaying. Particularly useful on shelterbelts which are little covered elsewhere in this detail.
Out of print and difficult to find!
|Morley, Margaret and Ken
|The Great Upheaval - An Account of the Enclosure of Wingrave and Rowsham in 1798
Bucks Print, Aylesbury 1994
|Fascinating account of a single enclosure act and its impact on a community.
|New Hedges for the Countryside
Farming Press 1992
|A comprehensive modern guide, concentrating, as you would expect, on hedge propagation, planting and aftercare.
|Martin, George A.
|Fences, Gates and Bridges - A Practical Guide
Stephen Greene Press 1974
|Reprint of this 1887 publication from the USA surprises with a small section on hedges and hedgelaying and advice on suitable hedging plants for the US.
|Pollard, Hooper & Moore,
Collins New Naturalist 1974
|Indispensable but out of print. If you read only one book about hedges, this should be it!
|The History of the Countryside
Dent & Sons 1986
|Marvellous, massive and very readable with an excellent section on hedges.
|The Illustrated History of the Countryside
Weidenfeld & Nicholson 1994
|Beautifully illustrated. Good section on hedges.
|Hedges, Walls and Boundaries
Dryad Press 1986
|An introduction for children covering walls as well as hedges
|Crafts of the Countryside
|Short chapter on hedging. Other chapters cover dry stone walling and hurdle making
|Streeter, D and Richardson, R
|Concentrates on flora and fauna. Follows two hedges month by month through the season. Nicely illustrated.
|Thomas, Eric & White, John T
Dorling Kindersley 1982
|Simple text, beautiful colour illustrations. Suitable for children.
|The Hedgerow Book
David & Charles 1979
|Concentrates on hedgerow plants and animals.
A Natural History of the Hedgerow and ditches, dykes and dry stone walls
Profile Books, 2016
|An excellent book. Very good coverage of field systems from the very earliest times. The author is a naturalist and expert on fungi. Includes a lot of information about species that depend on particular hedge plants and lots about insects and the tell-tale signs they leave behind on shrubs and herb species found in hedges. Includes good colour photographs throughout.
|General View of the Agriculture of the County of Hertforshire (1804)
David & Charles Reprints 1971
|An invaluabe and fascinating study of the rural economy of Hertfordshire in the early 19th century. Arthur Young covers hedgelaying in some detail over 10 pages in this book, including a series of plates and to my surprise and probably that of many others today remarks that "Hertfordshire may be considered as the county where the plashing system is carried on to the greatest extent: it has been universally practised here since time immemorial". He then gives his reasoning for this and goes onto to explain what is particular to Hertfordshire hedges in particular, making comparisons with Leicestershire, Suffolk. Since Arthur Young also produced the companion volumes for Lincolnshire, Oxford, Norfolk, Suffolk and Sussex, he clearly got about a bit.