THE MODERN MINT BLOG
The idea of a cycling gardener keeps cropping up in our thinking here at Modern Mint, as we would like to explore more ‘green’ avenues in the landscape industry. Is this a better way to get to work than driving around in a van – especially in a city?
If you google ‘cycling gardener’ there are a number of people out there who are already doing it. They all seem pretty happy too! We even found a courier company in Brighton who do all of their work on bikes, and in London you can find a florist who brings people flowers on two wheels, with her dog alongside her.
Other than the positives of reducing your carbon footprint and getting exceptionally fit, being a cycling gardener also means you have got to do the best job you possibly can, everyday. You really do have to care for your work, because being so local word will quickly spread if you don’t care about your job. We love this enforced restriction – that it is hard to fly by night when all you have is pedal power.
What else is unique about being a cycling gardener?
1) You will probably only work within 3 miles.
2) Power tools are likely to be out. So, with no breaking down there is no having to stop to fix things… and you don’t need ear defenders, hurray!
3) Organic is probably the way to go.
4) Minimal tools. Or even use a clients?
5) You will develop a garden over a long time.
6) You will likely supply seeds and nurture them to grow, rather than mature plants.
7) You will have to compost waste on-site.
8) You’ll source other products locally too?
9) You will probably want to stay in a garden longer as time and energy taken between jobs may be longer – at least 4 hours, if not a full day?
10) You can leverage other businesses to deliver for you or pick things up – say, a compost delivery?
The Brighton Cycling Gardener has a useful website and lists his kit on there. But briefly he uses a trailer base and hitch from Carry Freedom. A storage trunk of L 97 x W 50 x H 51cm – make it waterproof. Hand tools, spade, fork, shears, pruning saw, secateurs, a trug, leaf rake, patio brush and scraper, folding ladder and even a lawnmower…
We would probably substitute a hessian cloth for the trug (though the trug would be useful for watering) and an Azada instead of fork and spade.
Or, if we were close to a client already, we could of course just get a really nice wheelbarrow?
Please do contact us if you are or have ever used a cycling gardener. We love the idea and hope to test some ‘green’ ideas like this soon!
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!
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.
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 …