THE MODERN MINT BLOG
We spent last week working with Charlotte Molesworth in her garden, clipping and tidying some of the amazing topiary that needed a light prune.
Below are some of the of the photos, just taken on my phone and without filters…. what amazing shapes she has created in her garden over the last 30 plus years!
Absolutely love the holly and boxwood hedge in the next photo…. how beautifully does this clip?
This next one is something of an experiment, turning a mass of boxwood into something interesting….
This too is the same – a hedge that had rust, being opened out and turned into a single specimen. Air circulation is important for the health of boxwood topiary!
Finally, a short video….
If you want to see more of Charlotte’s garden, please do note it will be open for the NGS scheme in Kent later in spring, so keep an eye out.
If you think – I love this topiary and want some in my garden! – get in touch so Charlotte and I can help you make that happen.
To see the tools we use for clipping, check the Modern Mint pruning tools page. Thanks!
Phillyrea is one of my favourite plants for topiary. I have been using it for quite a few years as a specimen shrub, mostly due to the fact it clips well and has a tough habit – all good characteristics for a topiary plant. It also has a reputation for being an excellent nectar source for bees… Read more about Phillyrea here. Mentioning this to Malcolm Thicke, a market garden historian and writer, he sent me a some photos of topiary and phillyrea mentioned by John Worlidge in Systema Horticulturae from 1682…. incredible! He also mentioned to me that in …
Kites and Strings is a podcast about creativity, hosted by US-based Stephen Ploum and Catherine Chinnock. Back in March they asked me to come onto their podcast and talk about topiary, my past writing plays, the stand-up I did and how creativity can fit into your life. The Kites and Strings podcast was great fun and Stephen and Catherine are fantastic hosts. Listening back today I am surprised by some of the ideas I talked about (somehow I even started to describe a future where I run a ‘School of Creativity’ by the sea…. where did that come from?!) but it …
Robinia is often forgotten – by me, actually! – when thinking of plants for topiary. But when I work on it I do love it, brittle and soft as the wood is if you climb into it. But that danger of snapping a branch with a heavy step and falling out of the tree aside, I love it for the dappled light it allows into the garden space. Robinia Near The Sea Below is a Robinia I have gently clipped over the last few years, down near Leigh-on-Sea in Essex. The tree was large when I arrived, although it is …