Christian Gruessen

Webinar on Hedges and topiary cultivation

On the 7th of February 2023, Gunnebo House and Gardens is hosting the webinar on Hedges and Topiary cultivation in Historic Gardens.

Hedges and topiary are important structural and decorative elements of most historic gardens. The creation, maintenance and restoration of these elements require significant skills. Today these gardens are mostly maintained with contemporary power tools, but this webinar will present the historical gardening practice as well as contemporary solutions.

The content in the webinar is as follows: (changes may occur)
– What Dézallier d’Argenville, saw and what he missed: planting groves in 18th century gardens, by Dr. Jan Woudstra, University of Sheffield.
– Pruning hooks and hedge slashers: historic management of high hedges, Dr. Joakim Seiler, Gunnebo House and University of Gothenburg
– Extreme Hedge Cutting at Powis Castle, Head Gardener David Swanton
– Maintaining topiary and hedges in historic gardens, Chris Poole,
European Boxwood and Topiary Society (EBTS UK)
– In search of a hedge, Willem Zieleman, garden advisor and former Head Gardener Het Loo Palace
– Historic box alternatives and historic management of low hedges, Dr. Joakim Seiler
– Box alternatives, Jenny Bowden, Horticultural Advisor and Lenka Cooke, RHS
– Hedges, history of hedge laying and biodiversity value Nigel Adams
– Humble hedges – many environmental benefits. A presentation about ecosystem services of
urban hedges, Dr. Tijana Blanusa, Principal Horticultural Scientist, RHS

The webinar is free of charge, but participation requires registration by signing up.
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Picture of a historic park with figure-shaped hedges and a castle.
Photo: Gunnebo House and Gardens
Picture of spiral-shaped bushes/trees in La Ballue park.
Photo: Christian Gruessen, EGHN


Jenny Bowden’s presentation at the Hedges-webinar will present the results from the new Box alternatives survey by RHS.
Dr. Tijana Blanusa, RHS, is one of the speakers at the Hedges-webinar. Her presentation is about Ecosystem services of urban hedges.
Willem is the former Head Gardener at Paleis Het Loo National Museum in The Netherlands, now a garden advisor.
As speaker on the webinar, Dr. Jan Woudstra will focus on the garden element “The grove” in his presentation.
David is a speaker at the Hedges and Topiary cultivation-webinar on the topic «Extreme Hedge Cutting at Powis Castle».

Overview project activities


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TopicWebinar dateWorkshop dates
– 25/05/2022
– 10/06/2022
– 31/08/2022
– 12/07/2023
– 06/09/2023
– 29/06/2023
– 11/09/2024
– 28/08/2024
– 05/06/2024

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Webinar on Hedges and topiary cultivation

Other Garden Conservation

We cooperate with other actors in the heritage garden community throughout Europe, and here is some info about upcoming events hosted by some of them.


Join the team at Gunnebo gardens in Sweden for a two-day practical workshop in which we investigate the impact of historical techniques and tools on both the aesthetic and horticultural development of hedges.
It’s time! The Orangery at Gunnebo will finally be opening and we’re celebrating by inviting you all to our very first crafts festival. Are you interested in heritage crafts like wood and stone carving, timber framing or how to make a tiled stove? Would you like to know more about orangery plants and mowing with scythes? Then this is the perfect event for you.


Gunnebo is hosting this four days workshop, with the topic ‘Lawns and meadow cultivation in Historic Gardens’ which is a follow up on the webinar earlier this year.
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