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to be really annoyed with my neighbour?

(39 Posts)
BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 09:46:47

Our neighbour said to dh two days ago that he was going to trim the privet hedge separating our back gardens to "a more manageable height". (I didn't know anything about this, but dh assumed he meant about head height).

Yesterday evening I come downstairs and see that the neighbour has absolutely butchered the bloody hedge, taking it from a height of around 7ft to below waist height. Not only is it ridiculously short but he's made a crap job of it, huge tufts sticking out, totally uneven and mismatched with the tall hedge we have on the other side of the garden.

The worst thing is that we now have no privacy at all, and the garden is exposed to view from several houses in our street and the street backing onto us.

I'm totally pissed off about this and it's put me right off going the bloody garden. How long will a privet hedge take to grow 3ft?!

glitterchick Tue 21-Jul-09 10:18:51

YANBU. I would be totally pissed off too. Unfortunately it will probably take a couple of years to grow to decent height again. Although if it's your neighbours hedge he will prob keep trimmed forever. Plant something fast growing yourself instead.

FlamingoOfTheShineyCult Tue 21-Jul-09 10:27:16

YANBU - can you stick a fence up pronto?

ruddynorah Tue 21-Jul-09 10:28:53

well you should have asked what height he was thinking.

cheesesarnie Tue 21-Jul-09 10:30:31

if he asked you you should have made sure you knew what he meant by "a more manageable height".

mustsleep Tue 21-Jul-09 10:31:31

omg I would be sooo Angry!! angry

Can you afford to put up a 7ft fence

Our neighbours conifers are dying and have a nasty feeling they migh replace them with a four foot see through fence like they have at the front...thankfully it is "our" side of the boundary so we would have some say lol

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 10:32:36

It's a shared hedge, half the thickness in our garden and half in their garden IYKWIM. Yes, dh has said we'll get a fence put up, it will cost hundreds though which we could do without. Even as I type this my blood is boiling as I am looking out at it and it's a bloody shambles.

And you know when you got in the garden you like to relax and let it all hang out with the dc? Just feel like I can't do that now.

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 10:35:10

Agree yes, it was dh he spoke to so dh should have checked. He just assumed he would make it head height, as most people like a bit of privacy in their back garden I guess.

mumblechum Tue 21-Jul-09 10:35:16

Oh no, this would piss me off massively! To get someone in to put a fence up will probably be a couple of grand (that's what we were charged last year for the end of our garden to be fenced) BUT a cheaper option would be for you to erect a trellis, maybe just for the most important bits, say around your eating/sitting out areas.

Plant something v. fast growing like Golden Hop, Russian Vine or an evergreen clematis so you at least get some privacy for the first 6 months or so.

I think you really need to complain about it. How weird that he would cut it so short, thereby losing his own privacy too!

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 10:36:11

Mustsleep - make sure you do get your say!

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 10:38:45

Thanks for the horticultural advice mumblechum, I am clueless when it comes to gardening (just know that I liked my tall hedge - sob).

Flgihtattendant Tue 21-Jul-09 10:41:38

Betty,, how crap, our neighbours did this a few years ago, we've since moved but I never forgave them. Thatw as a quince headge though and it never did grow back. angry

Privet is quick, so you'll be Ok. Give it a year or two and it'll be back at the original height - just trim it a little as it grows... it's very fast, I had to cut our old one about 3/4 times a year. In fact I broguth it down to about 5ft once to keep it manageable.

Find out whose it is, then you'll be able to preempt the same situation again.

onagar Tue 21-Jul-09 10:42:41

Yeah, you should have asked. Is he getting on a bit? it's hard work to trim a hedge that's above your head and maybe he was thinking it would be better in the long run.

It will look crap at first when cut right back though maybe he didn't have the right tools to do the best job.

Don't confront him, but talk to him as a good neighbour/friend and persuade him it's better tall. if he is old then maybe offer to take over trimming it in future to save him the work as that way you will be in control.

IT will grow fast, but maybe you can put up something in the meantime. a trellis makes a barrier even before anything grows and doesn't look like it's meant to be the berlin wall

pranma Tue 21-Jul-09 10:47:29

Be careful with where you put the fence-dont compromise your boundary-trellis maybe less permanent.

Flgihtattendant Tue 21-Jul-09 10:48:26

Seriously - don't pay for a fence. Just let the hedge grow back, privet is SO fast. It grows at least 2 feet a year if left, but you'll want to let it do that gradually like with growing out your hair - keep trimming it, to allow it to get thick rather than just weedy new growth. Once or twice a year should do it fine, don't worry, and I can see why he wanted it low - my arms used to ache a lot after cutting above head height! Maybe around 5ft would be ideal, unless of course you can offer to maintain it yourselves from both sides.

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 13:52:18

Thanks for further replies, had to log off for a while.

No, he's not old, just very lazy when it comes to the garden. It's been like a jungle for the last three years, now he's hired a skip and gone on a mad chainsaw rampage - nothing is safe!

How would a trellis work then? Would it have to be fitted in front of our hedge? Would it not be quite expensive as we're talking about 25ft in length and at least 5ft in height? And would it be robust enough to take a bashing from the dc kicking footballs etc.

ChopsTheDuck Tue 21-Jul-09 14:06:15

lol, he sounds like my dp. He'd hack down all our trees given half a minute out there unsupervised. What aboout some willow to bung up jsut til it grows back?

I think you do need to talk to him though. I hate massive privet hedges personally and I'm always trying to cut the one in our front garden down to a shorter height. I think it's about 8ft atm, they do grow very tall, but our neighbours seem to like their house to look like the middle of Hampton court maze.

FabBakerGirlIsBack Tue 21-Jul-09 14:09:16

What is it with men and chopping down things?

I think it makes them feel hard and manly to chop 6 feet of something even if it looks crap, instead of cutting a few inches off something and making it look good.

GiraffesCanRunA10k Tue 21-Jul-09 14:17:11

Line garden chairs up facing his garden. Invite lots of friends over and sit staring in - repeat this whenever they are out. That will put him off chopping it again.

caykon Tue 21-Jul-09 14:36:38

It will cost you about £35 a metre for 6ft closeboard fencing, and they would be able to cut the hedge back so you don't loose any land. It is an expense but at least similar won't happen again.

caykon Tue 21-Jul-09 14:38:06

It will cost you about £35 a metre for 6ft closeboard fencing, and they would be able to cut the hedge back so you don't loose any land. It is an expense but at least similar won't happen again.

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 15:11:30

Lol @ Chopstheduck - I quite like the Hampton Court maze effect myself, means I can quite happily shed some clothes in the back garden without scaring the horses (ahem, not nude sunbathing you understand - we're in N.E England, not Scandinavia).

We have just forked out £650 a month ago to have five huge conifers removed from the bottom of the garden and a half brick wall, half slatted fence put up. Very angry that we'll now have to fork out more to rectify this. Also very angry at dh for not checking how much was going to be ruined lopped off.

I like Giraffe's suggestion. Actually, I draw comfort from the fact that by the time the neighbour's had to retrieve our dds' football from his garden for the hundredth time, he's be well and truly regretting being so gung-ho.

ohmeohmy Tue 21-Jul-09 15:15:25

Know how you feel. Our neighbour replaced 6 ft fence with 4 ft one then proceeded to chop everything down he could reach, including several trees on our side of the fence that I specfically asked him not to touch. He wants more light...we want more privacy. I am planning to get several fast growing tall things and plant them far enough in front of the fence so he can't reach.

He has taken the piss so much on this issue I don't care if his garden never sees the light of day. I have also amateurly diagnosed him as complete control freak who cannot stand the ways of nature. Not very gracious on my part but I think I can live with myself.

BettyTurnip Tue 21-Jul-09 15:16:53

What an arse.

Flgihtattendant Tue 21-Jul-09 16:59:41

Betty just wait, it'll grow back really fast.

(did I just say that?) smile No need to fork out for anything. As long as you can wait about 6 months. And if you do want a fence, cheaper panels are more like £10.99 each somewhere like B&Q.

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