Initiating Research into Adapting Rural Hedging Techniques, Hedge Types, and Hedgerow Networks as Novel Urban Green Systems
This article seeks to initiate research into traditional rural hedging techniques, hedge types, and hedgerow networks for the purpose of their potential adaptation as urban green systems (UGS). The research involves three scales: (1) the plant scale and related manipulation techniques; (2) hedgerows and their context-specific types, ecosystem function, and ecosystem services; and (3) hedgerow networks as continuous green systems that characterize and support specific landscapes. This research required an interdisciplinary approach. The analysis was conducted by applying different modes of research including: (a) an extensive literature review, (b) analysis and systematization of hedge types and manipulation methods, (c) field experiments, (d) design experiments, and (e) examination of real-life projects that use hedges or hedging techniques as distinct design features. The initial research indicates that traditional hedges can be adapted to vitally contribute to UGS by providing a broad range of urban ecosystem services. Furthermore, the research includes initial proposals on future applications of adapted rural hedge types and techniques. On the larger scale, anticipated difficulties regarding implementation, such as land allocation in cities and resourceintensive planting, management, and maintenance, are discussed and further research questions are outlined.
Author(s): Höpfl, L; Hensel, DS; Hensel, M; Ludwig, F