Ecologies of the hedge

Using Joseph Dodds to guide me through Deleuzoguattarian ecopsycology I’ve been playing around with the idea of hedges as a meshwork, the mix of many ecologies, processes, knowledges and disciplines converging, thriving, neither nature or human. A work in progress more photosketching than a solid approach.

The Hedge

Initially the remainder from land clearance for cultivation, the space in between that became boundary, defence, protector of crops, animal enclosures and lines of ownership. They now mask the cultivated environment from the roads we travel on. We have made a representation of nature, the myth that all is well with the environment, and in this denial, this space between the roads of civilisation and the fields of cultivation we are blind. We can no longer read nature, no longer tuned in therefore alien to ourselves.

Meanwhile, the hedge has been busy in our blind spot.

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Plant Invasion of the Soil Sensors

The primary invaders of the soil sensors are established, some are coming into flower so they’re feeling right at home. I’ve had many surprises as this project has unfolded, I wasn’t expecting the surrounding flora to feature quite so heavily in the outcomes, for example the Sticky Weed (Cleavers/Galium aparine), Bramble (Wild Black Berry/Rubus fruticosus) and Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) are quite aggressive invaders, all leaning into view or casting a shadow from off stage. I’m not sure why I wasn’t expecting this, it’s obvious really when you think about it, but I was preoccupied with seeds blowing in from above rather than suckers, tubers, climbers and ramblers creeping in from below.

Sensors 4 and 5 are under large trees so fallen twigs and leaves feature quite heavily, there’s not much light so only the bramble has made a start.

Sensor no.2 is a particularly good example of the plant invasion. It’s surrounded by allotments which is probably why there are so many common weeds.