Hedges with Messages

Hills and Dales, hedges build a room

A proper green and sturdy hedge sets a boundary, saying, “Stay on your side.” In an urban setting, a proper hedge can block prying eyes overlooking your hot tub or spare you from an unappealing view. A nice hedgerow through a field has a similar message, but it may invite voles, moles, and birds to settle in.

Boxus, generally known as Box hedges (of which at least 70 varieties are known,) are used in gardens, especially in the Italian style, to create patterns and parterres. These include diamonds, squares, and triangles with colorful annuals growing in the framed space. This garden style exudes a sense of formality, expecting visitors to conduct themselves accordingly. 

In Brussels, Van Buuren Museum & Gardens

A heart-shaped box hedge can send a message to all without words and with an air of romance. 

Boxwood hedging design family crest, Drummond Castle, Scotland

Drummond Castle created a hedge of the family crest, making a statement of pride. However, the message is less clear to the casual visitor.

Painswick House & Garden, 250 and growing
Painswick House & Garden, 250 years and growing

Some hedges go further, spelling out a statement in green. At Painswick House & Garden, a two-variety hedge using light and darker green celebrates the 250 years of the garden’s origins. The numbers are clearly defined and grown to state the importance of reaching a milestone, marking the date, and proudly moving forward.

Hills and Dales, Love
Hills and Dales, God Is Love spelled out in boxwood

Hills & Dales Garden in LaGrange, GA, spells out a message of their beliefs. Three words are clearly clipped into form. Spelling to God Is Love.

Pittmedden Castle Garden in Scotland
The letters are there?!?
Precise, but the message alludes me.

I frequently find these impressive messages in hedges and try to figure them out. But I met my match at Pittmedden Castle Garden in Scotland. Alexander Panton of Pitmedden and his son John were granted this land by William Lord Hay in 1421. It is a walled Scottish Renaissance Garden with formal hedges and floral design. You enter above the garden and the overlook clearly shows letters formed into words. A talented and determined gardener had formed letters wrapping from the left of the square across the bottom and up the right side. I studied it carefully trying to decipher the message. I was stumped. I walked down to the level of the hedge and looked at each letter. I recognized all the letters, but I couldn’t make words in any formation.

So, I admired but could not unlock the message in these hedges. But on the way out, I asked the staff what was written in the hedges. “Ahh tis the family motto, written in Latin.”  It translates to “We Hold In Blood.” That assumes their enemies knew Latin! It certainly was a message I’ve not seen before. Every garden is unique!

Hedge rows at Broadwoodside, Scotland

9 thoughts on “Hedges with Messages”

  1. Linda, thank you , as always, for not only transporting us to beautiful places, but introducing us to unique garden features.
    Gardeners are optimistic, aren’t they? And certainly plan for the future ☘️

    A grateful fan

  2. Thank you again, Linda, for sharing some heart warming photos of gardens of hedges–so creative—time intensive to create and to maintain, but SO pleasing to the lucky persons who get to partake in their beauty.. Thanks for the effort to share with us your wonderful hobby/avocation/devotion..

  3. Amazing to see! I can’t even imagine all that hedge trimming- happy to just enjoy your photos. Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *