THE MODERN MINT BLOG
Earlier this month Modern Mint were lucky enough to be invited to visit the garden of Charlotte Molesworth – the Queen of Topiary.
The garden is full of the most wonderful shapes in yew and box – peacocks, pets, clouds, plinths, blobs – you name it, the sun will be shining on it throughout the day, creating the most beautiful shadows and textures.
Charlotte explained that they have grown the garden over the last 33 years, the box all coming from cuttings. Looking at the sheer size and weight, it seems incredible that these pieces of art have grown from a tiny piece of stem.
But that is gardening – patience rewards!
Not just a topiarist, working wonders with plants, Charlotte is also an artist (in a more traditional sense) and flower arranger. Do pop down to her studio when it is open to see her creations.
We left inspired to do more clipping and topiary work, and to grow our own plants for pruning – not just the traditional native evergreens box and yew, but things like pittosporum, phillyrea and holm oak too.
Hopefully by next year we can put together some space for creating ‘hedge art’ – and one day become as good as Charlotte Molesworth!
If you want to have a go at some topiary, check out some tips we learnt previously from the ‘Topiary King’ Jake Hobson…
And most importantly – use good, sharp tools!
If you have a subscription, you can check out an article about bespoke ideas for your garden in the Telegraph. There are some great crafts people there, so check it out. Click Here To See The Article About my Topiary Work In The Telegraph
Lockdown has given me a chance to look through old notebooks and begin, gently, to piece together some sort of narrative about Modern Mint and how it has grown over the last six years. And it has changed massively in that time! Modern Mint Now, June Lockdown 2020 I currently make and maintain topiary all over the UK for clients who love well-pruned hedges and sculptures. I love this job – it is a beautiful art. In the winter I prune wisteria, roses and fruit trees in orchards. Much colder, shorter work days… but equally satisfying work. I give talks …
During lockdown I went through a number of old notebooks. I found a note about Gilles Clement and The Garden In Motion – Le Jardin En Mouvement. Underneath my note I had written: “To be researched more! Something to definitely think over!” Now, five years later I have looked again… and am thrilled by this idea. The Garden In Motion is about taking a piece of unused land, and then as the gardener you make choices to do ‘as much as possible for the land and as little as possible against’ it. You are talking about limited input – watering, …