When can you cut hedges legally?

Asked By: Mariza Ayzenschtat | Last Updated: 2nd January, 2020
Category: home and garden landscaping
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Currently, farmers and landowners are prevented from trimming hedges during six months, between 1 March and 1 September to protect nesting birds as part of EU legislation.

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Moreover, when can farmers cut hedges 2019?

You should not cut or trim hedges or trees between the dates of March 1st and September 1st without a derogation. You may only apply for a derogation if you plan to cut hedges before any new grass lay or oil seed rape is sown in the Autumn.

Similarly, can I cut my Neighbour's hedge? You are allowed, by law, to prune the roots or branches of a hedge if it's a nuisance and protruding into your garden. And therefore your neighbour can do the same if it's your hedge. If the height is the problem do not attempt to trim it without advice from a property solicitor.

Subsequently, one may also ask, can you cut a privet hedge right back?

Privet is tough as old boots and can definitely tolerate hard pruning. Ideally cut back one side of the hedge one year, then the other side one or two years later to retain the screening effect and give the plant the best chance of recovery.

Can I cut hedges in October?

With conifer hedges, make sure you do not trim them after August, as this can encourage bare patches to develop in the hedge. Yew can be safely pruned into early autumn (Sep). Boundary hedges can quickly grow to overhang the street or pavement. These should be trimmed to ensure they do not impede access by pedestrians.

35 Related Question Answers Found

When should farmers cut hedges?

Currently, farmers and landowners are prevented from trimming hedges during six months, between 1 March and 1 September to protect nesting birds as part of EU legislation.

Do I have to cut both sides of my hedge?

The responsibility for boundary hedge cutting is shared. Both you and your neighbour should be trimming each other's respective side of the hedge. You are free to cut back roots or branches that are within your property's boundaries. However, you're only allowed to trim the growth on your property.

Why do farmers cut hedges?

Hedges are cut to prevent them growing out into fields and reducing the land available for cropping and grazing. They are also cut to keep them thick and bushy – this is particularly important in livestock areas where hedgerows still act as living fences.

How do you trim bushes in the summer?

Summer-flowering Bushes
These bushes should not be pruned in the summer before blooming, as this would remove the buds that are about to bloom. Prune these shrubs before new growth begins in the spring, either when they are dormant in winter or in early spring.

Can you cut a tree down with a birds nest in it?


It is an offence to cut down a hedge or tree intentionally or recklessly whilst there are birds nesting in it. In this context it means that if you cut the tree down knowing there was a chance that birds were nesting there and you didn't check, then you would have been reckless and therefore guilty of the offence.

How do I make my hedges thicker?

Heading Back
  1. Cut away the terminal bud, located at the tip of each branch of the shrub, with a pair of pruning shears.
  2. Select two or three branches with heavy top growth that blocks sunlight from reaching the middle of the shrub.
  3. Wait a few weeks until the shrub produces new shoots from the pruning cuts.

How far can you cut back a privet hedge?

To rejuvenate a privet hedge, cut the entire hedge back to within 12 inches (30 cm.) of the ground. Do this in late winter. The shrubs resprout after being cut back hard.

When can I hard prune a privet hedge?

Privet hedges. Privet should be trimmed at least twice a year, from May to August. The more you cut it, the more it forms a dense, even hedge and the easier it is to keep it to the same size. If necessary, prune it hard in April to reduce the size of the hedge.

What time of year is best to trim hedges?

Ideally, hedges should be pruned in late winter, when plants are dormant and haven't produced buds—particularly if you're cutting back drastically. "You don't want them to break bud before you prune because you want the plant's energy to go toward producing new growth where you want it," says Roger.

Why is my privet hedge dying?


Based on the symptoms, the reason for your privet hedge to be dying is: A common privet killer – Honey Fungus (Armillaria) – a fungal disease that spreads through the soil. The fungi themselves tend to target weak or old plants. The older the plant is, the longer it takes to kill it.

How do you rejuvenate a privet hedge?

To renovate or rejuvenate a privet, cut the entire plant down to within 6 to 12 inches of the ground and begin the training phase again, snipping new growth back by half every 12 inches to promote a full, lush plant.

How do you revive a hedge?

10 Steps to help and revive a dying, sick or neglected overgrown hedge.
  1. Step 1: Evaluate and assess.
  2. Step 2: Remove any dead and diseased plant material.
  3. Step 3: Nominate poor performing and affected branches and cut them back hard.
  4. Step 4: Prune off excess growth to encourage air and light movement within the hedge.

How do you feed a privet hedge?

Broadcast the fertilizer directly under your privet hedge, covering the soil from the privet's base to the imaginary line under the shrub's further branches. After applying the fertilizer, irrigate your privets to help carry the fertilizer nutrients down to the hedge's roots.

Can I ask my Neighbour to cut his trees?

You have a common law right to cut back tree branches that overhang onto your property. The law states that any branches cut off belong to the person on whose land the tree originally grew, so you should ask your neighbour if they want them back, or if they are happy for you to dispose of them.

How tall can my Neighbour's hedge be?


A high hedge is determined as being a line of two or more evergreen (or semi-evergreen) trees or shrubs. Critically, they must be at least 2m high and block light or access to a residential property.

What is the law on hedge height?

Although the law states that a high hedge is more than 2m (approx 6½ft) tall, this is not necessarily the height to which a hedge is reduced. The final height will be decided by your local council based on the requirements and information provided by the complainant and hedge owner.

Who is responsible for cutting a hedge between properties?

Provided there are no Boundary Disputes, and if both parties agree to the hedge, you will usually both be responsible for the maintenance of the hedge on your own sides. You can cut the hedge right back to your neighbour's boundary, although there are some exceptions to this.