THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Apr25

Who Has Inspired Our Chelsea Fringe 2017 Project?

Capture Carbon In Your Garden

For the fourth year in a row Modern Mint will be taking part in the Chelsea Fringe festival. The Chelsea Fringe is THE alternative garden festival that runs alongside the Chelsea Flower Show, bringing a more whimsical and anarchic energy to gardens and garden lovers all over the world.

It has truly become a remarkable event.

At Modern Mint we have names this years project ‘Capture Carbon In Your Garden.’

Capture Carbon in your Garden

 

What Is Our 2017 Chelsea Fringe Project About?

In a nutshell, we are sharing with you the ways you can make a difference to the world and lower your carbon footprint – by using the plants and soils in your garden to capture CO2 and store it for the long-term.

This is not just a wishy washy project that you do for a little bit and then forget about. By making your garden into a carbon sink, you also improve growing conditions for the plants in your garden.

Our soils are improved by humification, the adding of organic matter. The better our soils the better the plants that grow in them. Now, humus is made up of 60% carbon, so that is one amazing way to improve the vigour and health of everything you plant.

It is best practise, and just makes sense, to capture carbon in your garden.

For more on how to do it, read Capture Carbon In Your Garden.

Who Inspired Our Chelsea Fringe Project 2017?

Why have decided to make the capture of carbon our project aim for 2017? Well, we are inspired in our gardening practise by a number of people, all brilliant minds who are following fine values.

Check them out:

Monica Araya, Building A Society Without Fossil Fuels

John Walker, the Earth Friendly Gardener

Village Farm, Fighting Climate Change on the Farm

Tshering Tobgay, from Carbon Negative Bhutan

Ecological Gardening, a brilliant blog about Carbon Capture

Carbon Gold, a company making a difference

The Third Plate, fabulous book on food and health from chef Dan Barber


These people have really made us think about how, with a few simple actions taken, our gardens can change the local landscape as well as the wider world.

Ignoring the fact that the same week we announced our carbon capture project, Donald Trump said he would use more coal to power the USA while the UK announced with great excitement that it had found 1 billion barrels of the stuff, untapped, 60 miles from the coast of Shetland…. we decided we still needed to carry on with sharing this idea to reduce our CO2 footprint.

Taking such joy in finding oil these days seems so backward. Yes, it will make investors a lot of money, but it makes Britain look silly next tot the people of Bhutan and Costa Rica, who are ploughing ahead with clean energy from renewable sources.

So what can we do? Just our best, with what we have got – our gardens, and their ability to capture carbon.

Good luck with your capture carbon project and let us know how it goes!

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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