THE MODERN MINT BLOG

May09

Ditch The Power Tools (To Be A Happier Gardener)

We love topiary and clipping here at Modern Mint. That is one of the reasons we sell some of the best, sharpest and most beautifully balanced hand tools in the business…

Best Topiary Clippers

 

THE BEST TOPIARY CLIPPERS. EVER.

So it is gratifying to read about others who have ditched the power tools and started taking the time to garden with a better, quieter connection to the plants.

“I decided at the end of autumn 2015 to become a fossil fuel-free gardener – or at least work towards it. No bothering with extension cables, no fiddling with my chainsaw’s petrol-oil mix, just muscle-power.

I’d like to say that my conversion was the result of a high-minded engagement with the Slow Movement, but that was only part of it. It was more to do with a growing irritation with just how much it takes to keep power tools happy….”

Read more about this chaps adventure in ditching power tools here.

We loved this article, because it shows what happens when you spend a little time with your plants. You learn more about how they grow, sure, but you also learn about yourself. Those few times he has spent doing the garden, bit by bit, creates a habit that will eventually lead him to his goal (of cutting the hedge without fossil fuel.)

Less irritation with sorting out the tools, less of an attitude that it is just another job to tick off the to-do list, gardening in tune with your own muscle means you grow personally – the mind will start by racing away with all the thing you could be doing, but then settles (quicker than you might think!) and allows you to focus, pay real attention, on the actual job at hand.

It is a lovely way to live, to work – and who needs the hedge done at once anyway?

Kudos to the guy as well, for having hedges as the boundaries of his home. What a fantastic place for wildlife to inhabit.

To see what can be done with hand tools, check out our work with Charlotte Molesworth at her topiary garden in Kent….

To see the tools we use to make life easier and the mind… sharper… visit our pruning tools page for a browse.

Mar19

Wasting Water

Well worth a read in the BBC today – a note on how wasting water in the UK “as socially unacceptable as blowing smoke in the face of a baby.” Read the report here. I have written a talk about how we use water in the  garden. It was written when I moved from Hampshire to Essex and found out for myself just how dry this area of the UK is. It completely changed the way I garden. The lack of such a precious resource as water made me question what we can do to save it, store it and …

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Mar14

The Foie Gras That Tastes Like Nature

Ethical Foie Gras? Is That A Real Thing?   Foie gras – can it be ‘grown’ ethically? The video showing how this farmer works suggests it can… We first read about this in a book called The Third Plate by Dan Barber. I loved it and I love how Eduardo the farmer, who farms on the Dehesa in Spain, has a ‘take half leave half rule’. When talking about how the geese eat his olives… “They’re always quite fair. If you make sure the geese are relaxed and happy, you’ll be rewarded with the gift of fatty livers. That is God’s …

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Mar04

Hardy Orchids Via James Wong

Hardy orchids – here is a subject I would love to know more about – so lo and behold, James Wong has written about it in the Guardian! Read the article about hardy orchids here. I love having orchids in the house, just your usual run of the mill buy them in any shop orchids, but it is a pleasure to read about the plants that will grow outside and cope with this weather. (This insane weather! From the hottest days of February on record to Storm Freya, all within a week. Weather is always such a factor in gardening, but …

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