THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Mar18

Growing Botanicals in Hampshire

How do you grow Cassia in the UK? You have to make it up as you go along….

We have found a lovely, short interview about growing the botanicals for Bombay Sapphire Gin in 2 glasshouses in Hampshire (near where we learnt to garden just outside Basingstoke!)

According to the gardener Chris Cottrell, who runs the glasshouses at Laverstoke Mill, the only other place in the country that is growing cassia is Kew, so when it starts to look unhealthy there are not a lot of places to turn for advice.

It is the bark of the cassia tree that is used to flavour Bombay Sapphire Gin.

Read the article here.

Grab a bottle of Bombay Sapphire here.

Or discover more about UK Gin, the artisans that make it and the range of botanicals used in one of our most popular blog posts at Modern Mint – Best Gin 2017 – The Most Useful Guide To UK Gin.

Jun10

Brought By Bike – Topiary Making

Brought By Bike is an excellent website I found last month, where businesses offer their services by (of course) bicycle. Modern Mint and my topiary work is now live on the site offering my topiary services, via bike, to the following two postcodes – CM1 CM2 Now I can imagine I will need to borrow a ladder should anyone have a larger shrub, but most town gardens in the Chelmsford area have a need not just for privacy but to let light into the house… so a balance must be struck when shaping hedges and shrubs to cover both needs. …

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May10

Transforming Topiary

topiary transforming

Transforming Topiary – a video made for the European Boxwood And Topiary Society by Charlotte Molesworth and I, in her garden. We take a dog topiary and work out how to update it, turning it into a bird. Worth a watch I think, and hopefully useful to you! You can see more of my clipping on the topiary page. Or read my Spring 2021 Topiary Provocation here.

Apr28

Phillyrea From 1682

Worlidge Phillyrea

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 …

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