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to think this woman should not be chopping bits off our hedge?

(45 Posts)
bintofbohemia Mon 19-Sep-11 13:38:46

I dunno, we've recently moved from a city to a very small town, and am not entirely sure about bush trimming etiquette. We have brambles in the yard (which is great, free blackberries) and they also give us a bit of privacy from the little road behind. (Pic on profile.) So imagine my shock when I looked out of the window at lunchtime to see an old lady's face peering over, brandishing secateurs having lopped off half of them?!

I guess maybe she thinks she's doing us a nice favour by chopping them off, but seems like an odd thing to just get stuck in and do? And there's now a big bald spot where people can see in again. I'm fairly laid back about the state of the yard (as we've hardly been around over the summer and haven't massively done anything to it) but I feel a bit odd about this woman just taking it upon herself to hack bits off. AIBU?

ragged Mon 19-Sep-11 13:40:07

She trimmed your hedge bordering the road behind your property? Not just trimming bits of your hedge that hung over her garden, but over the public road? confused

aldiwhore Mon 19-Sep-11 13:40:59

She can trim her side, but not yours. We have a shared drive so had a chat about bush etiquette.

bintofbohemia Mon 19-Sep-11 13:42:05

Yeah, she doesn't live behind, it's just a road behind there. I have no idea who she is!

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 19-Sep-11 13:42:30

'Bush trimming etiquette'... step away Frankie Howerd... depends on where they are. If there's a small road beyond them, perhaps they are hanging over the pavement and scratching people as they walk by.

bintofbohemia Mon 19-Sep-11 13:42:34

I hope she's not scuppered my chance of a pie... hmm

BeerTricksPotter Mon 19-Sep-11 13:42:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Oakmaiden Mon 19-Sep-11 13:43:05

I'm having a hard job imagining the exact setup here - even having looked at your picture. Does your garden back directly onto the road?

Brambles do spread like mad, and it could be that if they were trailing over the back fence they were a nuisance to passers by? It is a bit odd though, that she would take it upon herself to chop them down. However, if that WAS the reason then I guess she thought it was a nicer way to do it than to complain to the council and get them to make you do it.

If that wasn't the situation, then I have no idea...

Stoirin Mon 19-Sep-11 13:45:57

We trimmed a load of brambles that hung out onto a public road, because we had to walk down it several times a day, and they were a bloody nuisance, hanging down at face height and blocking most of the path. Didn't look like the owners were ever going to do it and I got sick of dodging thorns all the time.

wannaBe Mon 19-Sep-11 13:48:43

are they hanging over the pavement? because if so I can see her point tbh.

There is a tree that overhangs the pavement on my way on the school run. It's in someone's garden but one massive branch overhangs the pavement to the extent that it is very difficult to avoid - and bearing in mind I have a guide dog it is hard for him to avoid as it's quite high up so sometimes he doesn't catch the angle right... I have smacked into it on several occasions now, and it's taken a week of correction and praise and encouragement to get the dog to go round it at the right place so I only hit the leaves rather than the branch (busy road beside said pavement so impossible to go round). I am severely tempted to go round there with an axe and lop it off. <<conjures up image of axe-weilding guide dog owner>>. grin

Upwardandonward Mon 19-Sep-11 13:50:02

Many places seem to have byelaws that require you to not obstruct the pavement - e.g. here

bintofbohemia Mon 19-Sep-11 13:50:41

Hmmm. there's a bit of pavement back there, but there seems to be some sort of bush growing in the middle of it anyway. It's a little road with two houses at the top, very quiet, I never see anyone driving/walking up it. It's weird, this town...

BeerTricksPotter Mon 19-Sep-11 13:52:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

bintofbohemia Mon 19-Sep-11 13:53:23

P'raps it is me BU? Have never really walked up the road behind and never really paid much attention to the yard or anything in it since we moved...

BadRoly Mon 19-Sep-11 13:55:38

I think she was maybe trying to be helpful, especially as brambles are viewed by some people (well me) as a weed...

reddaisy Mon 19-Sep-11 13:56:32

We got a letter from the council telling us we needed to trim back some hedges/brambles that were partially overhanging a public footpath. They even enclosed a little map thing showing us where the boundaries are.

We rent our home and the brambles are not within the wall of our back garden so we had no idea they were anything to do with us and we don't use that footpath so didn't know they were a problem.

So someone has obviously complained to the council, so anyone who has problems should contact the council as DP was out there to fix the problem the same day.

SnakeOnCrack Mon 19-Sep-11 13:57:47

If the brambles were blocking the pavement or something, and she was clearing the way then I can sort of understand it.. maybe she thought she was doing you/the council or whatever a favour? Hmm though!

OpenMouthInsertFoot Mon 19-Sep-11 14:00:18

Did you go out and ask her what she thought she was doing?

Andrewofgg Mon 19-Sep-11 14:03:13

Cogito you've got a dirtier mind than I have and that's saying a lot! grin

bintofbohemia Mon 19-Sep-11 14:05:04

I was going to go out, but she sort of scurried off after she saw that we'd seen her. (IYSWIM!) Although I've just looked out (I work from home) and she's now sweeping the street with a dustpan and brush. Perhaps she's a bit bored and likes that kind of thing?

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 19-Sep-11 14:07:25

Well go out there, walk along the pavement and see if the brambles are causing a problem. They grow incredibly fast, can scratch you to ribbons and if they don't get clipped regularly the place can quickly get very 'Sleeping Beauty' IYKWIM

purplepidjinawoollytangle Mon 19-Sep-11 14:10:13

Take her a cup of tea and say hello! Most people see brambles as a PITA - they scratch, spread in a heartbeat and look really tatty. She is most likely a friendly (possibly lonely) neighbour who thinks she's doing you a favour - you've just moved in and obviously haven't had time to see to the garden.

zipzap Mon 19-Sep-11 14:14:34

SOunds like you should have been brave and gone out and asked her what the fuck she was doing attacking your brambles.

The thing that would really annoy me is not so much that she was doing it if it was blocking a path or something (I know you haven't said it is) but that in doing it she has left the garden open to being seen.

Maybe she liked seeing into the garden and wanted to carry on watching?

zipzap Mon 19-Sep-11 14:16:10

argh cross posted with everybody.

That will teach me to double check before posting an answer to a thread with only a couple of posts on when dh has popped in for a discussion - only to discover that the thread has moved on considerably blush

needanewname Mon 19-Sep-11 14:20:02

I would ask her next time you see her.

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