Another hawthorn tip for those of you who planted your quickthorn (same as hawthorn) whips last year. Hopefully you followed our instructions and cut each plant back by half when you planted it. Equally hopefully, they all survived the weird winter last year and the very dry April. (Second dry spring in a row for those who are counting).
If they did both of the above, then each little stick should by now have somewhere between two and five side branches and be beginning to make a little hawthorn bush. If they are, here is tip number 3 for hawthorn beginners.
Be brave and cut those side branches (some of which are probably 30-40 cms long back by half again. Don't do it exactly now, but don't forget to get the shears out between the end of November and the beginning of March.
If you do this, then each branch will behave in the same way as the original stem did last winter. In spring, between two and five dormant buds will break into growth below each cut. So your (average) 3 branches per plant will produce 3 side branches each and the little bush will have all the making of a thicket.
Which is what you want in the best hawthorn hedge.