This week on Ours to Protect we looked at the importance of our native hedgerows.
Did you know?….
Last week was National Hedgerow Week, which highlighted how hedgerows provide food and shelter for wildlife and pollinators; they clean our air, store carbon and prevent flooding.
The importance of our native Irish hedgerows for biodiversity, our climate and agriculture cannot be overstated.
Recent research by Teagasc found that hedgerows on Irish farms provide a network of around 700,000kms of wildlife habitat.
This is hugely important because just 11% of Ireland is covered in forest, one of the lowest figures in Europe.
Hedgerows also sequester up to 58 tonnes of carbon per hectare.
How can we help?……
If you are interested and able to begin a hedgerow, the following tips may be useful.
It’s helpful to have a shrubby base, keeping it leafy and wide.
Hedgerows are beneficial when they are at least two meters wide and over two meters high.
Using native plants and letting some mature trees grow to full height.
Try to cut different sections at different times.
Hedgerows need to be managed as they are man-made habitats but approaching them with a gentle touch is the most effective way of dealing with them.