Throughout the history of American gardens, hedges were used for a variety of practical and ornamental purposes. The feature created divisions within the garden, protected tender plants from cross-winds, formed barriers against both animal and human intruders, screened unsightly [[view]]s, outlined ornamental [[bed]]s and [[walk]]s [Fig. 1], and brought flowering variety to the garden. <span id="Downing_cite"></span>According to [[Andrew Jackson Downing|A. J. Downing]] (1838), hedges were ideal for these purposes because their architectural form functioned much like a [[fence]] or [[wall]], while their organic material allowed them to harmonize with planting arrangements and to articulate other forms of architecture to the landscape ([[#Downing|view text]]). <span id="Deane_cite"></span>As Samuel Deane noted in 1790, live hedges were preferable to [[fence]]s and “dead hedges” (wattle [[fence]]s using woven plant material) because the living plants created a “perpetual fence” whose posts never decayed and stakes never failed ([[#Deane|view text]]). Their versatility also made them adaptable to any scale, whether enclosing a field, screening a privy, or edging a [[bed]] (see [[Fence]]).
<div id="Fig_2"></div>[[File:0969.jpg|thumb|Fig. 2, [[Thomas Jefferson]], Plan of the grounds at [[Monticello]], 1806. [[#Fig_2_cite|Back to texts.]]]]
Hedges were found throughout America, but the plant materials employed in them varied, depending on the purpose of the hedge and the climate of its particular region. <span id="Prince_cite"></span>In 1828, William Prince praised hedges, particularly of buckthorn and maclura, as windbreaks affording protection in areas subject to severe winds ([[#Prince|view text]]). Fast-growing evergreens were recommended for hedges needed to screen an area, although they were not advised for situations calling for trimmed effect or where a long shadow was undesirable. In these cases, the arborvitae, which grows quickly and densely, was the most common choice. At times, the screening effect does not appear to have been intentional; <span id="Hovey_cite"></span>in 1839, for example, [[C. M. (Charles Mason) Hovey|C. M. Hovey]] described the fish [[pond]] of the Elias Hasket Derby House in Salem, Massachusetts, as being entirely surrounded by an eight-foot high impenetrable hedge ([[#Hovey|view text]]). Where such an effect was desired, various types of thorn were effective as impenetrable barriers. [[Andrew Jackson Downing|Downing]] noted that “there are few creatures, however bold, who care to ‘come to the ''scratch''’ twice with such a foe.”<ref>A. J. Downing, “A Chapter on Hedges,” ''Horticulturist'' 1 (February 1847): 346, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/keywords_in_early_american_landscape_design/items/itemKey/3BBFEPHX view on Zotero].</ref> Cacti were similarly used at the California missions to create barriers around fields. Plants for ornamental hedges, however, were selected for their foliage, blossoms, and berries. For instance, a wild rose hedge was planted at [[Mount Vernon]], while the deep green foliage of the privet was admired at Oatlands, D. P. Manice’s residence in Hempstead, New York. Because of their combination of flowering beauty and edible produce, fruit trees, such as apple, peach, and orange, were sometimes planted as [[espalier]] hedges (see [[Espalier]]). [[Thomas Jefferson]] capitalized on the many uses of hedges: he designed thorn hedges to enclose his [[orchard]] and garden area [Fig. 2], planned hedgethorn and privet or cedar to line his [[slope]]s, and, in a proposal of 1771, used a hedge to screen his [[icehouse]] from view [Fig. 3].<ref>Jefferson purchased much of his plant material for Monticello from Thomas Main, a nurseryman and author of an 1807 work on hedges. See Brenda Bullion, “Early American Farming and Gardening Literature: ‘Adapted to the Climates and Seasons of the United States,’” ''Journal of Garden History'' 12, no. 1 (1992): 37–38, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/5MKAGJ2V view on Zotero].</ref>
[[File:0167.jpg|left|thumb|Fig. 3, [[Thomas Jefferson]], General plan of the summit of [[Monticello ]] Mountain, before May 1768.]]
Climate was also a factor in plant choice for hedges. In warmer regions ornamental hedges were composed of orange, yucca, Cherokee rose, and gardenia, while cedar, spruce, and juniper were used in colder areas such as New England. Prince recommended maclura or osage orange for Philadelphia and areas to the south. <span id="Hooper_cite"></span>Edward James Hooper, in ''The Practical Farmer'' (1842), maintained that buckthorn was suited to New England’s climate while European hawthorn did better in the west, although other descriptions suggest that the use of thorn varieties was not regionally specific ([[#Hooper|view text]]).
[[File:0932.jpg|thumb|right|Fig. 4, R. W. Dickson, “Hedge Fences[[Fence]]s,” in ''Practical Agriculture'' (1805), vol. 1, pl. 31, opp. 110.]]
Early evidence of hedges in the American landscape may be found in books of instruction on the delineation or division of arable fields, a practice taken directly from European agricultural tradition. Hedges created by close planting and interweaving of [[shrub]]s to create a dense barrier were categorized in many horticultural and agricultural treatises as a type of [[fence]], rather than identified with other planting arrangements such as [[thicket]], [[grove]], and group. The discourse about the advantages of hedges over [[fence]]s was particularly rich in the American agricultural literature of the early 19th century. Proponents of the new “scientific agriculture,” such as John Adams and Ezekiel Hersey Derby, reported their experiments with different plant varieties and techniques for forming hedges [Fig. 4].<ref>For example, see Ezekiel Hersey Derby, “Cultivation and Management of the Buckthorn. . . for Live Hedges,” ''Horticultural Register'' 2 (January 1, 1836): 27–29. For a discussion of scientific farming in the Boston area, see Charles Arthur Hammond, “‘Where the Arts and the Virtues Unite’: Country Life Near Boston, 1637–1864” (PhD diss., Boston University, 1982), chapters 2 and 3, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/VVFZVIKT view on Zotero].</ref>
*[[George Washington|Washington, George]], 1785, describing [[Mount Vernon]], plantation of [[George Washington]], Fairfax County, VA (Jackson and Twohig, eds., 1978: 4:102, 115)<ref>George Washington, ''The Diaries of George Washington'', ed. Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, 6 vols. (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1979), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/CKQVPUC3 view on Zotero].</ref>
:“[March 14] Planted the 9 young peach Trees which I brought from Mr. Cockburns in the No. Garden—viz.. . . 2 in the [[border]] of the Walk leading from the [[Espalier]] '''hedge''' towards the other cross [[walk]]. . .
:“[April 8] The ground being too wet. . . I was unable to touch that which I had been preparing for grass; and therefore began to hoe that wch. lyes between the New circular ditches, & the Wild rose '''hedges'''.”
*Drayton, Charles, November 2, 1806, describing [[The Woodlands]], seat of [[William Hamilton]], near Philadelphia, PA (1806: 54, 57—58)<ref>Charles Drayton, “The Diary of Charles Drayton I, 1806,” Drayton Hall: A National Historic Trust Site, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/HAARCGXN view on Zotero].</ref>
:“The [[Fence|<u>Fences</u>]] separating the [[Park]]-[[lawn]] from the Garden on one hand, & the office [[yard]] on the other, are 4 ft. 6 high. The former are made with posts & lathes—the latter with posts, rails & boards. They are concealed with evergreeens '''hedge'''—of juniper I think. . . .
:“. . . From the Cellar one enters under the bow window & into this Screen, which is about 6 or 7 feet square. Through these, we enter a narrow area, & ascend some few Steps [close to this side of the house,] into the garden—& thro the other opening we ascend a paved winding [[slope]], which spreads as it ascends, into the [[yard]]. This sloping passage being a segment of a circle, & its two outer [[wall]]s <u>concealed</u> by loose '''hedges''', & by the projection of the flat roofed Screen of masonry, keeps the [[yard]], & I believe the whole passage <u>out of sight</u> from the house—but certainly from the garden & [[park]] [[lawn]]. See the plan of the Grounds.
:“The <u>Stables</u>, & sheds, form the 3rd side of this three sided [[yard]]—The stables are seen from the front door of the house, over the '''hedge''' that screens the [[Yard]].”
*Hulme, Thomas, June 28, 1818, describing the settlement of Morris Birkbeck, New Harmony, IN (quoted in Cobbett 1819b: 475)<ref>William Cobbett, ''The American Gardener'', 1st ed. (Claremont, NH: Manufacturing Company, 1819), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/9CBPIU6H view on Zotero].</ref>
:“910. I very much admire Mr. Birkbeck’s mode of fencing. . . . The banks [of the ditches] were growing beautifully, and looked altogether very neat as well as formidable; though a live '''hedge''' (which he intends to have) instead of dead poles and rails, upon top, would make the [[fence]] far more effectual as well as handsomer.”
[[File:0878_detail.jpg|thumb|Fig. 8, Anonymous, “Ground Plan of a portion of Downing’s [[Botanic Gardens Garden]]s and [[Nursery|Nurseries ]] [detail],” in ''Magazine of Horticulture'' 7, no. 11 (November 1841): 404.]]
*[[C. M. (Charles Mason) Hovey|Hovey, C. M. (Charles Mason)]], November 1841, “Select Villa Residences,” describing Highland Place, estate of [[Andrew Jackson Downing]], Newburgh, NY (''Magazine of Horticulture'' 7: 406)<ref>Charles Mason Hovey, “Select Villa Residences, with Descriptive Notices of each; accompanied with Remarks and Observations on the principles and practice of Landscape Gardening: intended with a view to illustrate the Art of Laying out, Arranging, and Forming Gardens and Ornamental Grounds,” ''Magazine of Horticulture, Botany, and All Useful Discoveries and Improvements in Rural Affairs'' 7, no. 11 (November 1841): 401–11, [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/SXS8ZS3J view on Zotero].</ref>
:“18. [[Flower garden]], in front of the [[greenhouse]]. . . Under the arbor vitae '''hedge''', which is here planted against the boundary line, the [[greenhouse]] plants are principally placed during summer.
*Bradley, Richard, 1719–20, ''New Improvements of Planting and Gardening'' (1719: 1.2:7, 17; 1720: 2.3:27–28)<ref>Richard Bradley, ''New Improvements of Planting and Gardening, Both Philosophical and Practical . . .'' 3rd ed., 2 vols. (London: W. Mears, 1719–20), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/U8DEKNZ4 view on Zotero].</ref>:“[vol. 1] They [ever-greens] are so ornamental where they are rightly managed, that I think no Garden can be compleat without ’em; they make beautiful and useful '''Hedges'''. . . .
:“It [the Yew-Tree] is of great use for '''Hedges''', and make most agreeable Divisions in Gardens; it is customary to [[fence]] in the [[Quarter]]s of [[Wilderness]] Works with these Plants, where they have a very good Effect. . .
:“[vol. 2] In these several [[Quarter]]s plant your Trees at about sixteen Foot distance, if you design a close [[Orchard]], or near thirty Foot asunder if the Ground is design’d for Beans, Peas, or such like Under-crops. . . The Ground thus planted may be fenced about with '''Hedges''' of ''Philbuds'' and ''Berberries'', to make it still the more compleat and delightful.”
[[File:1053.jpg|thumb|Fig. 10, Batty Langley, “Design of a ''rural Garden'', after the new manner,” in ''New Principles of Gardening'' (1728), pl. III.]]
[[File:1383.jpg|thumb|Fig. 11, Batty Langley, One of two “Designs for Gardens that lye irregularly to the grand House . . . ,” in ''New Principles of Gardening'' (1728), pl. X.]]
*Langley, Batty, 1728, ''New Principles of Gardening'' (1728: vii–ix, xiii)<ref name="Langley">Batty Langley, ''New Principles of Gardening, or The Laying Out and Planting Parterres, Groves, Wildernesses, Labyrinths, Avenues, Parks, &c'' (London : Printed for A. Bettesworth and J. Batley et al.,1728), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/AN26GF5X view on Zotero].</ref>
:“Plate III. is the Design of a ''rural Garden'', after the new manner, . . .
*Miller, Philip, 1759, ''The Gardeners Dictionary'' (1759: n.p.)<ref>Philip Miller, ''The Gardeners Dictionary: Containing the Methods of Cultivation and Improving the Kitchen, Fruit, and Flower Garden. As Also, the Physick Garden, Wilderness, Conservatory, and Vineyard . . . Interspers’d with the History of the Plants, the Characters of Each Genus and the Names of All the Particular Species, in Latin and English; and an Explanation of All the Terms Used in Botany and Gardening, Etc.'', 7th ed. (London: Philip Miller, 1759), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/4XH23U3R view on Zotero].</ref>
:“[After a description of the types of trees used in '''hedges''', Miller notes that] '''[h]edges''' are either planted to make [[fence]]s around enclosures, or to part off or divide several parts of a Garden; when they are designed as outward [[fence]]s, they are planted either with Hawthorne, Crabs, or Blackthorn, which is slow; but those '''hedges''' which are planted in Gardens, either to surround [[Wilderness]] [[Quarter]]s, or to screen the other parts of a Garden from Sight, are planted with various Sorts of plants, according to the fancy of the Owner some preferring Evergreen '''Hedges''', in which case the Holly is best, next to the Yew, then Laurel, &c. . .
:“The taste in Gardening having been greatly altered of late Years for the better, these clipped '''Hedges''' have been almost excluded; and it is hoped that a little Time will entirely banish them out of English gardens, as it has done by the shorne evergreens, which a few years since were esteemed the greatest beauties in gardens. The latter was introduced by the Dutch Gardeners, and that of tall '''Hedges''' with Trellage work was in imitation of the French gardens; in some of which of the Iron Trellage to support the trees which composed their cabinets, [[portico]]s, [[bower]]s, [[pavilion|Pavilons]], and other pieces of rural architecture, amounted to a very great sum.”
:“''Live '''hedges'''''.—The trees mostly used for '''hedges''' are the White English Hawthorn, the Holly, the Red Cedar, and the Privet. In the vicinity of Baltimore and Washington cities, they use two species of American Hawthorn, which appear to have decided advantages over the European. The Rhamnus catharticus forms a most beautiful '''hedge'''. . .
:“''Crataegus oxycantha, or European White Thorn.''—This is the common species used throughout England for '''hedges''', and which has been considerably planted in this country for the same purpose. It answers very well trained as ornamental tree among [[shrubbery]], but is far less suitable for '''hedges''' than many of our native species. . .
:“''Ilex aquifolium, or Common European.''—. . . It is found very suitable for '''hedges''', for which purpose it is extensively used in England. In addition to the Common Holly, there are a great number of varieties, viz.. . .
:“''Privet, or Prim.—Ligustrum vulgare.''—This [[shrub]] is generally known, and was formerly greatly cultivated for '''hedges''' in this country, and is still so in many parts of Europe. The '''hedges''' formed of it are beautiful in the extreme, arising from its fine myrtle-like foliage, and its abundant clusters of berries in autumn and winter; and, when the sub-evergreen variety is used for this purpose, it possesses the advantage of retaining much of its foliage during the winter season. . .
:“''Mespilus pyracantha, or Evergreen Thorn.''— This has very dense foliage; the leaves are small, and of a fine dark green; it produces abundance of white flowers, which are delicate, and much admired; but, like the foregoing, it is its fruit which gives it the greatest claim to beauty. These are of the same size as those of the preceding species, they are of a fiery red, and are produced in the greatest abundance, and retain their beauty during the autumnal and part of the winter months, and serve to decorate this [[shrub]] at a season when nature most needs their aid. Being a sub-evergreen, and retaining a large portion of its foliage during winter, gives it another claim as an appendage to the [[shrubbery]]. It is now considerably planted for '''hedges''', for which purpose, uniting beauty with usefulness, it does not appear to be surpassed by any other. . .
[[File:0379.jpg|thumb|Fig. 14, Anonymous, “View “[[View]] of a [[Picturesque ]] farm (''ferme ornée''),” in [[A. J. Downing]], ''A Treatise on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening'', 4th ed. (1849), 120, fig. 27.]]
*<div id="Downing_1849"></div>[[Andrew Jackson Downing|Downing, Andrew Jackson]], 1849, ''A Treatise on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening'' (1849; repr., 1991: 119, 302, 305, 310, 344–45)<ref>A. J. [Andrew Jackson] Downing, ''A Treatise on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, Adapted to North America'', 4th ed. (1849; repr., Washington, DC: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 1991), [https://www.zotero.org/groups/54737/items/itemKey/K7BRCDC5/ view on Zotero].</ref>
:“In Fig. 27, is shown part of an embellished farm, treated in the [[picturesque]] style throughout. The various trees, under grass or tillage, are divided and bounded by winding roads, ''a'', bordered by '''hedges''' of buckthorn, cedar, and hawthorn, instead of wooden [[fence]]s. . . [Fig. 14]
Image:0932.jpg|R. W. Dickson, “Hedge Fences,” in ''Practical Agriculture'' (1805), vol. 1, pl. 31, opp. 110.
Image:0969.jpg|[[Thomas Jefferson]], Plan of the grounds at [[Monticello]], 1806. “'''Hedge'''” is inscribed all along the curving [[border]].
Image:1372.jpg|[[J. C. Loudon]], Plan of a [[Ferme_ornée/Ornamental_farm|ferme ornée]] with wild and irregular '''hedges''', in ''An Encyclopædia of Gardening'' (1826), 1023, fig. 722.
Image:0878.jpg|Anonymous, “Ground Plan of a portion of Downing’s [[Botanic Garden]]s and [[Nursery|Nurseries]],” in ''Magazine of Horticulture'' 7, no. 11 (November 1841): 404. “19. '''Hedge''' or screen of [[arbor ]] vitae. . .”
Image:0960.jpg|John J. Thomas, “Plan of a Garden,” in ''Cultivator'' 9, no. 1 (Jan. 1842): 22, fig. 8. “From ''o'' to ''m'', the [[walk ]] may be flanked with '''hedges''' of evergreen. . .”
Image:0823.jpg|Joshua Barney, ''Map of Hampton'', 1843. Courtesy: Hampton National Historic Site, National [[Park ]] Service. The symbol for “'''Hedges'''” is noted in the References box.
Image:1048.jpg|Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Sketch of the Grounds of the Longfellow Estate, 1844.
Image:0998.jpg|Anonymous, “Mr. Lee’s '''Hedge''',” Salem, MA, in [[A. J. Downing]], ed., ''Horticulturist'' 1, no. 8 (Feb. 1847): 355, fig. 84.
Image:0379.jpg|Anonymous, “View “[[View]] of a [[Picturesque]] farm (''[[Ferme_ornée/Ornamental_farm|ferme ornée]]''),” in [[A. J. Downing]], ''A Treatise on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening'' (1849), 120, fig. 27. “The various trees . . . are divided and bounded by winding roads, ''a'', bordered by '''hedges'''.”
Image:0777.jpg|[[Frances Palmer]], “Ground [[Plot ]] of 4-1/4 Acres,” in William H. Ranlett, ''The Architect'' (1851), vol. 2, pl. 6. “I” represents “'''hedge''' of cedars.”
</gallery>
Image:0179.jpg|Anonymous, ''The Mill'', c. 1830.
Image:0797.jpg|Thomas Hodell (artist), Pierre Charles Canot (engraver), “A South East [[View ]] of the City of New York, in North America,” c. 1768.
Image:2250_detail1.jpg|Unknown, Kitchen Garden [detail], Elias Hasket Derby House, [circa 1795-1799], Samuel McIntire Papers, MSS 264, flat file, plan 107. Courtesy of Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Rowley, MA.
Image:0133.jpg|Rufus Porter, Landscape mural from Howe House, 1838.
Image:1139.jpg|Edwin Whitefield, ''[[View ]] of Hartford, CT. From the Deaf and Dumb Asylum'', 1849.
Image:1009.jpg|Anonymous, ''Homestead of Humphrey H. Nye, New Bedford'', 1860–65.
Image:1501.jpg|Anonymous, “Manner of Planting '''Hedges''',” Salem, MA, in [[A. J. Downing]], ed., ''Horticulturist'' 1, no. 8 (February 1847): 353, fig. 83.
</gallery>

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