Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Remembering Hawthorn Hedges.

Now it doesn’t really matter whether you spell it ‘Hawthorne’ or ‘Hawthorn’, it is the same tree and the name simply means "thorny hedge."
I was reminded of this Hedge plant a couple of times recently. Firstly I was recently watching a Scottish show with my First born and she remarked on the hedges in Scotland, along with the stone fences, and I reminded her that in at least one place in Victoria, at a place called funnily enough, Stony Rises in the Western District, Stone fences still remain, although Hawthorn Hedges do seem a thing of the past now.
I then reminisced on how as a Child there were plenty of Hawthorn Hedges at Kangaroo Ground. And guess what? The original settlers at Kangaroo Ground were Scottish too. And they kept Sheep then too.
Sadly today at KG, all the sheep and the Hawthorn hedges are all gone now. But when I went to Primary school there, we lived 4 miles from School and so Mum used to drive us to school each day. However as parking at the School was limited and awkward, we had to walk a mile or so towards Home, where she would come along and pick us up than, as it was much easier to turn there than at the School. So sometimes we would walk even as far as the Cemetery there, which was more like two miles! And there were hawthorn hedges almost all along the way, on one side of the road or the other. Sadly the sheep and the hedges have all gone now and replaced with either grape vines or houses!
Secondly I then went for a walk around our Neighbourhood a bit further than normal and came back along Mooroolbark Road, and tried out this nice new concrete path they have put in between Landscape Avenue and the Park at the bottom end of the Road. Whilst walking along this pathway, I noticed among the many new native plants being planted, there was in places what looked like the remains of an old Hawthorn Hedge. And it turned out it was the still living relics of a Hawthorn Hedge in places. Nothing like it would have been years ago, but still there nonetheless!
So I was happy to see that even in this day with the mad race to remove all introduced plants and replace them with natives, (many of which are not really native to this area,) that some common sense was being shown with the reattaining of at least some of the character of years gone by.
How about you now? Are you so interested in the new that you are throwing out the old without any thought or concern for your heritage or the things of your Youth?
So as you think of the things of your Youth that are fast disappearing, please think of what you can do to keep those things worthy of preservation, and not just throw everything old out for the new. True, not everyone will miss these prickly old hedges, but in full bloom they were a sight to behold, even if they do/did give some people hay-fever or asthma! What say you now?

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