Horticulture Magazine

How Much Does Hedge Removal Cost?

an overgrown hedgerow

Some people devote enormous amounts of time and effort to cultivating the perfect hedge.

Look along their prized hedgerow, and you’ll see near uniformity. No leaf out of place, complete consistency in size and colour.

A pleasure to behold and a testament to their gardening ability.

a perfectly manicured hedge
Clean, clear, crisp lines

Other people find hedges far less fascinating. Something to look at, sure, but only in passing.

Something to devote time to, but only an hour or so every couple of years to run a trimmer over it to get it looking a bit more presentable.

This category contains the vast majority of Brits: those of us who may have a hedge on their property but probably didn’t plant it, and who realistically aren’t ever going to become enthusiasts of these extended rectangular plants.

Then, there are those of us who have reached the end of their hedge tether.

For whatever reason, these people decide it’s time to end their hedge affiliation. To remove it entirely from their property and their lives, and most likely to replace it with a wall, a fence, or some other separating structure that doesn’t need active maintenance through the course of its life.

If you find yourself drifting into this last category you’ve probably noticed just how many different quoted costs there are out there for hedge removal. That’s why we’ve put this post together: to help you navigate the surprisingly complicated world of hedge removal.

What is hedge removal?

In gardening parlance, hedge removal is a service wherein you pay a professional in possession of the right tools to visit your property and remove one or more hedges.

Because these plants are usually quite large, experience and equipment are both invaluable.

The physical act of hedge removal involves getting at the roots and removing them from the ground.

Sometimes work is required to gain access, especially if it’s been a long time since the hedge had a trim, or if it’s a particularly dense one.

How much should hedge removal cost?

Because of the work and expertise involved, hedge removal involves labour costs. Then there’s the cost of removing the waste, both of which combine to give your total cost.

hedge trimmings in the back of a pickup
There’s the removal, then the removal

In general, you should expect to pay between £100 – £500 for a hedge to be removed. Obviously this is quite a large price bracket, so let us break down the contributing factors:

  • Does the workman charge per metre or per hour? With the former they’ll be able to give a quote in advance based on the size of the hedge, whereas with the latter you’ll only get a ballpark estimate of how long things might take. Ask in advance so you know what you’re getting.
  • Whereabouts in the country are you? Tradespeople in certain regions of the UK are able to charge more for their time based on demand and the local economy. If you’re a Londoner looking to get a hedge removed you’re looking at the higher end of average quote brackets.
  • Are you wanting removal, trimming, or pruning? If you’re reading this article we’re guessing you’re in the market for removal specifically, but bear in mind prices will be lower for trimming or pruning. Maybe consider getting your hedge tidied up if you’re not a fan of it in its current state but are baulking at removal costs.
  • How overgrown is the hedge? If the removal people will have to fight hard to get to the roots of your hedge, this will likely equate to a slightly higher cost. Keep this in mind when getting a quote, and think about tackling some of the worst growth yourself.

All in all, there are enough factors to hedge removal that it’s difficult to give a precise estimate for what you should expect to pay.

The best course of action is simple: get clear measurements for the size of your hedge, gather a few companies near you, call them all, and ask what it’ll cost.

With this information you’ll be able to build a picture of hedge removal costs near you, and compare the different quotes received.

You’ll most likely see some variance in the numbers, which you can then weigh against other factors to decide which company to go with.

Look at things like number of reviews, years in business, how professional their website looks, and so on. Recommendations from friends and family are always a good bet, too.

When should you remove a hedge?

It’s time to remove a hedge when you’re no longer enjoying having it around. Perhaps it’s getting in the way of some planned DIY work or a garden project? Or maybe you’re spending too much time with the secateurs keeping it in shape each year?

Whatever the reason, it’s unlikely that the cost of getting a hedge removed will be too prohibitive, especially if you’re able to save for a little while.

Bear in mind that local wildlife may have established themselves in your hedge over time, so it’s important to consider the impact any removal might have on local species.

Consider replacing your hedge with pollinator and wildlife-friendly plants to benefit any wildlife you might displace.

Do you need permission to remove a hedge?

If a hedge falls entirely in your property and you own it, there are no laws stating that you need permission from your local council.

If you’re renting, you need to check with the landlord to check they’re happy to remove it. If they are, or if there’s a structural reason for the removal, they may be willing to pay (or contribute to) the hedge removal cost.

One thing to be careful of is hedges that mark boundaries. In this case it’s possible that some (or all) of the hedge falls on your neighbour’s property, and removing this without permission could spark a debate.

Always find out who the hedge belongs to, and even if it does belong to you, it’s always nice to ask your neighbour to see if they have any objections to the removal before you start work.

man poking his head through border hedge
“Oi, stop trying to nick my hedge”

Stop hedging your bets

In short, while it’s tricky to give an exact quote without knowing the specifics of your hedge, removing one from your property probably won’t break the bank.

The best thing to do is do your research, build a good understanding of the job at hand, then go to several companies near you until you find the best quote.

Then it’s time to get the drawing board out: what are you going to do with your newfound space now that the hedge is gone?

Whatever you choose, repurposing parts of your garden in line with your tastes and goals is an exciting prospect, and we hope you enjoy it!

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