Our circle of co-conspirators


A strong and healthy hedge needs a variety of different intertwined, interleaved species in order to thrive — each adding something essential, something which is necessary to attract different kinds of wildlife to the hedge, and to provide nourishment, shelter and sustenance for the ecosystem which arises. We all need friends and collaborators — not least for the craic! Here, then, is our growing team of friends and co-conspirators …




Dr Joanna Gilar works with us on developing the programme and resources at The Hedge School; from 2018 she will also be offering occasional courses. Joanna is an academic, writer and storyteller whose work explores the intersection of stories and the wild world. She has a PhD in fairy tales and ecological storytelling from the University of Chichester, and has spent ten years teaching language and literature at Charles University, Prague and colleges across the Czech Republic. Now based in Sussex, she works as a guest lecturer at the University of Chichester, and spends the rest of her time looking after her eight-month-old son, writing about home-making and parenting, and performing poems and stories at venues across Europe and the UK. Joanna’s website is at www.fabularosa.co.uk




Mary is a landscape gardener – but a very unusual landscape gardener, because her focus is on marrying the needs and wishes of the land’s guardian with the needs and wishes of the land itself. With her roots in natural gardening theory, Mary seeks to create spaces that are healing, truthful and magical. She is the author of the beautiful and inspiring book The Garden Awakening (which you can order through her website, at the link below). Her approach to garden design, described in the book, is a practical treasure-map which leads gardeners into a gentle and healing relationship with the land. Dare to be Wild, a feature-length movie based on Mary’s journey to build a gold medal-winning natural and determinedly Irish garden at the Chelsea Flower Show, was released in 2016. Her new approach to garden design is a practical treasure map that leads gardeners into a gentle and healing relationship with the land.

Mary is a contributor to courses at The Hedge School; you can find her website at marymary,ie.


Subscribe to our newsletter

Please sign up to Sharon's monthly newsletter, 'Rustlings from the Hedge', to keep up to date with all our news.