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Removing spiky bushes

(13 Posts)
wonkylegs Mon 31-Mar-14 10:28:12

We bought our house last summer & we are now getting to grips with the huge garden. The previous owners seemed to favour lots of huge vicious spiky thorned bushes & trees, they are all over the place. We don't think they are particularly child friendly & some keep attacking DH as he tries to mow the lawn so we are keen to remove at least some of them.
We took out a group of three but it was painful going even with thick leather gloves & Iong sleeves. I'm also now continually raking thorns & spiked leaves out of the ground.
Does anybody have any tips on how to do this as we've got loads more to do (About 20 large shrubs) and my poor hands are suffering.

mistlethrush Mon 31-Mar-14 10:30:19

I try to cut branches off with my long handled pruners - and then carry the branch to the green bin with the pruners, lift it on top and cut it into the bin directly. Having said that, I'm currently suffering from an invisible thorn in finger from 2 weeks ago...

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 31-Mar-14 10:30:50

What are they first?

If you really need to get rid, it's going to be a long process. You might be better off hiring someone to come and get rid, as they will know the techniques and shred them there and then.

SylvaniansKeepGettingHoovered Mon 31-Mar-14 10:38:26

Can you put some sort of weed killer/plant killer on them to wilt them a bit first, and then take them out? Making sure not to get the poison on any other nearby plants

mistlethrush Mon 31-Mar-14 10:47:23

Killing them with weedkiller will just make it dead thorns - which are almost worse than living ones though.

wonkylegs Mon 31-Mar-14 10:55:29

I can't identify all of them but we definitely have:
Hawthorn
Pyracantha
Various Berberis inc barberry red jewel & Japanese barberry Bagatelle.
Holly

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 31-Mar-14 11:57:26

Yeah bin the lot - nothing worth keeping IMHO. If it was a quince I'd have tried to persuade you otherwise.

Keep at it and put it in the garden waste bin if you have one, or get someone in would be my advice. Depends on how quickly you want them removing.

sunbathe Mon 31-Mar-14 12:01:11

Not child friendly, no, but lots of berries and flower colour.

Are they planted round the boundary - I wondered if they were a burglar deterrent?

mistlethrush Mon 31-Mar-14 12:01:12

But quince don't have thorns...

I've got quite a bit of holly - but I'm keeping it in check and trying to maintain a nice shape - its quite good architecturally.

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 31-Mar-14 12:07:03

Yes quince do have thorns!

mistlethrush Mon 31-Mar-14 12:11:36

Ah, do you mean Japanese Quince? Chaenomeles? That does have thorns (and lovely flowers) I agree - but I've grown quinces for quite a long time now and they don't (the fruit tree).

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 31-Mar-14 12:15:43

She didn't say she had a fruit tree, the spiky quinces are often used for hedging - hence asking. The fruit is still edible though, if a little smaller.

Even quince the fruit tree can be spiky, depends on the variety.

wonkylegs Mon 31-Mar-14 12:20:27

It's not logically planted as a deterrent, the boundaries are holey need replanting with new hedging. The spikey plants are in large clumps some in the middle of the lawn, others over grown in a large central bed. We have over an acre of lawn, split into sections by beds & shrubs.
DH has a theory that the previous lady of the house (who chose the plants) didn't like her husband (who did the mowing & hedgecutting) much.grin
We burnt the first lot we pulled out along with masses of ivy that was choking some beautiful trees.
The garden is a massive job as I think they were struggling with it for the past few years and let a few things get out of control.

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