THE MODERN MINT BLOG
We run several lawncare programmes for clients in both Essex and Hampshire.
We start our programmes by asking the client the most important lawncare question…
When they have answered that (many clients are incredibly adept at describing what they want from their lawn) we devise them a programme that will help them get what they want.
The lawn in the picture above is one we are now in our second year of working on. The client is pleased at how well it is standing up to conditions, but we think it would look even better if the client’s garden help did not cut it as low as he is. There is no need to cut it this short as the lawn is not used for playing on or as access to anywhere, it is purely ornamental.
Its purpose is to give a restful green space to the eye, to be pleasantly in scale with the house and border. Another 20-25mm (yes, really that much!) would give it a green lushness and strength currently being taken away from it every time it is cut.
Our lawncare programmes are built around five key parts:
1) Spring feed – high in nitrogen.
3) Summer feed.
4) Scarify and aerate.
5) Autumn feed – higher % of potassium.
This may appear facile, but obviously we edit and change the options depending on the weather, your site and conditions, what you use your lawn for and what we are actually trying to achieve. We think though, for the amateur, it gives a good basic programme to think about when trying to keep things simple… and we should keep things simple – we are only growing grass after all.
But if we could give you one piece of advice (or maybe two?) it would be this:
1) Cut your lawn at the same height on a regular basis, leaving it as high as you possibly can.
2) Aerate your lawn.
These are simple, easy to manage tasks that will improve the lawn remarkably. The rest is the dressing, the incremental improvements (although personally, we like daisies, so improvement is only in the eye of the beholder…) but do the two actions above and you will notice the difference – promise!
If none of that work and faffing about appeals, or you are after a lower maintenance alternative, why not spend your money on a meadow instead of lawncare – see our Ten Meadows project to see what we are trying to achieve in Essex and London!
Products to help you with your lawn can be found here at Rolawn.
You can probably get a bargain lawnmower right now too.
And last of all, this is the bible of lawncare… The Lawn Expert.
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 …
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 …
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