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!

Sep29

New Topiary In South London Out Of Yew

Making a new topiary out of the large, dull facade of a Taxus blob… My work was to change it up from a ‘jelly drop’ shape and give it texture, open it out and let the light through, and make it a sculptural feature in the background of the garden in summer… yet a major part of the garden in winter. A few more years before it becomes something special, but there was far more leaf and growth inside the plant than I thought and so it will not take too long for it to gain in character and become …

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Sep27

Topiary Teacher – Put on The Spot!

topiary teacher

Two weeks ago I was invited to teach topiary at the garden of Griselda Kerr, the author of The Apprehensive Gardener. I love teaching and sharing skills, but I was placed on the spot in the afternoon and asked to show how I would make a new topiary from an existing shrub. So below is a speeded-up video of me creating a cloud-pruned topiary from an old boxwood tree. I particularly love the ending when the class get involved….! See the video here. One hour was all it took, and though it needed a little tidying-up, it was made by …

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Sep27

Book Yourself A Topiary Workshop 2022

organic topiary snow

Charlotte Molesworth, my topiary mentor, and I are running our popular topiary workshop again in 2022. You can email me for details – or go here for information, your ticket and to find out about dates. Book A Spot On A Topiary Workshop, September 2022