THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Jan25

Creative Pruning – A Vocabulary

A simple blog post today – we offer you a vocabulary to use when looking at ways to prune creatively, then at the end link to places you can buy tools and read more about the work of some of the key players in the pruning world.

We hope this vocabulary is useful though – as you never know when you might need to explain the difference between a wibble and a twmp – it may help sell the idea to a client, or unwilling family member who thinks you should just leave that tree well alone…

A Shape and Clipping Vocabulary

Blobs

Blobberies

Balls

Squares

Cubes

Rectangles

Dice

Domes

Cones

Spirals

Crenellation – a space between two merlons in a battlement wall.

Puddings

Multi-stem

Standards

Spheres

Buttresses

Windows

Arches

Wedding Cake

Boxes

Parasol

Goblet

Drumstick

Helter Skelters

Teardrops

Kidneys

Clouds

Rockets

Pyramids

Merlons – the upright bit in a castle fort (see crenallation… or google ‘crenels…) An archer may have peered through it to fire arrows.

Carbuncles

Parterre – a more formal topiary arrangement than a bump, say…

Doughnuts

Bumps

Parachutes

Niches

Batter – sloped side on a hedge, where the bottom is wider than the top allowing light to reach the whole height of the hedge.

Eggs

Slabs

Planes

Broccolli

Peacocks

Humps

Lumps

Bells

Bolls

Tunnels

Candles

Tumpties

Twmps

Mushrooms

Onions

Liberty caps

Nipples

Espalier

Pleached

Niwaki – meaning ‘garden tree’ – Niwaki: Pruning, Training and Shaping Trees the Japanese Way

Pollarded

Stilts

Stooled

Raised

Layed

Coppiced

Hedge – double, triple…

Flailed

Thinned

Animals

Chess Pieces

Top Hats

Russian Dolls

Plinths

Soldiers

Castles

Faces

Organic

Karikomi – one plant repeated in a great mass… for great effect…

Flat

Semi-flat

Poodle

Pompom

Furniture

Nursery & Topiary Specialists

Jake Hobson – sells tools here at Niwaki, and his books are here at Amazon.

Nicky Fraser – graffiti artist using hedges. Brilliant stuff!

Solitair

Charlotte Molesworth – It’s the shape of things to come.

Topiary Arts

Architectural Plants – where we first heard the term Niwaki.

Earlstone Box and Topiary – field grown box plants near where we lived in Hampshire.

Langley Boxwood – where we sourced little used Buxus ‘Herrenhausen’, a tiny leaved box…

European Boxwood and Topiary Society – publishers of the wonderful Topiarius magazine and brilliant starting place to learn about all things box. Modern Mint are proud to be members!

Tool Vocabulary

 

We hope this glossary of terms helps you put into words what you are trying to do when you clip. It is, much like the act of pruning, an organic artifact that is growing all the time as new people take up a pair of shears and begin to shape the plants around them.

We hope that you have a go this year, and can help add another word to the growing vocabulary of the pruner!

May20

Art In A Topiary Garden

Just inc are you are free in the following dates in June, you can visit my mentor Charlotte Molesworth’s topiary garden… Check out the dates the garden is open here. And you can of course join both Charlotte and I for a topiary workshop in the garden in July, as well as September. Hope to see you there!

Apr30

Nunki Weeder In The Newspaper

The Nunki weeder has been talked about by Jane Perrone in the newspaper (the Guardian, if you are interested. At the weekend.) She said this about our lovely weeding tool… “Getting on top of annual weeds such as hairy bittercress and speedwell can be tedious. The Nunki weeder has a curved blade that allows for precision work around plants….” There you go – a weeder for precision work, not an avocado destoner as someone once said to me. Take a closer look at the Nunki weeder now.

Apr28

Turn Your Lawn Into A Meadow

There has been some great articles around recently, what with the gardening season upon us and the Extinction Rebellion happening. I particularly liked this from Alys Fowler – Turn Your Lawn Into A Meadow “(Most lawns) are biodiversity deserts… and worse still, we pursue this. There are aisles in garden centres promising ever-greener sward, with no moss and weeds. Let there be no misunderstanding; these are chemicals that silence the soil.” Raise your mower height. Don’t cut until June. Then just once a month afterwards. Love that advice. And it is saving petrol for your mower too! This article also …

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