Hedge Laying course at Kate's Farm Humble by Nature
An initial tutorial on the hedge laying course at Humble By Nature Hedge laying billhooks Getting to work laying a hedge at Humble By Nature Getting to work laying a hedge at Humble By Nature Getting to work laying a hedge at Humble By Nature Getting to work laying a hedge at Humble By Nature A group of hedge layers at Kate Humble's farm Humble By Nature The finished hedge

Course Agenda

Arrive for tea, coffee and a tasty bite to start the day
Getting to know the basics

Before heading out to the fields we will teach you the theory of hedge-laying. You’ll learn when & why you might want to lay hedges before looking at techniques, tools and regional variations.

Hands-on practice

Head out to the Humble by Nature fields where Farmer Tim will demonstrate how to use the tools safely and lay a section of hedge. Then it’s time to have a go yourself.


Laying hedges is always hungry work! We’ll eat a delicious, hearty home-made lunch in the barn. This is a great time to talk technique, get to know your fellow course members and enjoy some great local food.

Back out in the field

You’ll spend the rest of the afternoon practicing your technique. Farmer Tim will be on hand to help and guide you to create your own section of laid hedge.

Course closes

We’ll finish the day with a cup of tea, some well deserved treats and the opportunity to ask any further questions.


Saturday 8th Nov 2014
Last few
Saturday 24th Jan 2015
Saturday 28th Feb 2015
Sunday 15th Mar 2015

Hedge-laying is the ancient craft of creating a living, natural boundary to a livestock field or garden. Using little more than a chopping tool called a billhook, an experienced hedge-layer can create 20 metres of laid hedge in a day, the natural old-fashioned way to stock-proof your field for sheep or cattle.

On this very hands-on course, our experienced farmer Tim Stephens will work alongside you to create a new laid hedge - everything from preparing the ground, to cutting wooden stakes and hazel bindings, to the skilled art of ‘pleaching’ – slicing the stem of a tree just enough to keep it alive and make it supple enough to become part of the laid hedge.

Hedge-laying is an autumn and winter activity so after a delicious lunch be prepared to get wet and muddy! This course will give you the confidence and skill to create your own laid hedge.

Tim Stephens Farmer and smallholding tutor at Humble by Nature catching a sheep

Our farmer Tim grew up on a farm and has been farming all his life. Originally from Blaina in the Welsh Valleys, with his wife Sarah (who works in a nearby veterinary surgery) Tim now runs the Humble by Nature farm just outside Monmouth.

What to bring and other essential info

Hedge-laying has to be done in late autumn & winter so it can be a cold, wet job. You will probably get muddy and scratched so bring good, weather-proof outdoor clothing and if possible good gardening gloves. All hedge-laying tools will be provided. This course is limited to 10 places so book early!

Reviews & Tweets about this course

Can I say a huge thank you to all the team at Humble by Nature, for giving us such a memorable day. From initial reception through to the good byes at the 
close of the course, the whole day was relaxed, informative, and fun.
And despite the energy expelled in hacking my way through brambles and blackthorn, I think I put on weight, the food was so good.
Just perfect.

Thanks so much for the hedge laying course. Just excellent. Tim has a great way of leading this. A really good practical guide, lots of hand on experience and great fun. Very nice set up and great food. A really terrific day, thank you. Would thoroughly recommend this course to anyone who really wants to learn this great craft.


We have had the most fantastic day - thank you.

Caroline and Carly

Great course, great food, great company. Diolch yn fawr.


The great food sustained us all and a great hands on day - creating a "layed" hedge.

Judy and Nick

Best course to do next

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