THE MODERN MINT BLOG
I am running a topiary workshop in 2020 with the wonderful topiary artist Charlotte Molesworth at her spectacular topiary garden in Kent.
This is a topiary workshop where you will learn to clip, so be prepared to do some cutting.
We start with a tour of the garden, which Charlotte and her husband Donald have been cultivating for 34 years. It is organic, full of wildlife and has the most extraordinary pruned shapes made from yew and boxwood.
You can see more photos of the garden in an article in the Guardian here:
What Else Will The Topiary Clipping Workshop Offer?
After the tour of the garden Charlotte and I will run you through the ideas you need to know – pruning techniques, the correct tools for the job, how to sharpen your shears and what plants can be used to create the topiary in your garden.
We are also keen to teach you about plant health and how we keep the topiary looking healthy and well, especially in light of the boxwood caterpillar nibbling bushes across the UK. (I’ve discussed the caterpillar in a post here – Dealing with Boxwood Caterpillar.)
“I’m inspired to try some topiary now. You both make it fun as well as interesting and it’s good to know it doesn’t matter if you make mistakes.I’ve started a Christmas list already for some shears!”Previous Workshop Participant
When Is The Topiary Workshop? And Where?
Start time is 10am and it will be at Charlotte’s topiary garden in Benenden, Kent. More details about how to find it will be sent to those on the course as we get closer to the date. But you can visit earlier by staying at ‘The Potting Shed’, a barn in Charlotte’s garden.
Go here to see the Potting Shed Holiday Cottage.
The workshop lasts 3 hours, so from 10am-1. Cake and refreshments are provided.
If it rains, we will get wet! So please bring suitable clothing and shoes. If you have a pair of shears or clippers, bring them with you as well.
Do I Need To Learn To Clip On A Topiary Workshop?
Nope, not at all! Go into your garden with secateurs and shears and make some shapes. Practise makes perfect, and we love to see people give pruning a go.
But this learn to clip workshop will be a lot of fun, taught by two experienced teachers and taking place in the most incredible setting. Because the group is smaller and you get two tutors, it also doesn’t matter what level you are at – keenness is the only qualification, as we can adapt the day to help you get the most from the workshop.
“Thank you both for a truly inspiring day in the most wonderful setting, for your generous hospitality, and especially for trusting us with your precious plants! I hope very much to see you both again in the not too distant future!” Jo, Workshop Participant
Spaces are limited on our learn to clip topiary workshop, and it is the only weekend we will be teaching in Charlotte’s garden in 2020, so please do book early to guarantee your spot.
It may also be something you would like to do with a friend, so do share the idea with them!
Here is an updated list of books for keen gardeners. I have enjoyed these books immensely, they range from designers and how they work to helping wildlife to thrive. And by buying from here you are helping local or independent bookshops to survive too. Here is the list – go take a look and nab something to read now!
I compiled a list of books using Bookshop, a new online shop to rival Amazon. I like it because it is supporting independent bookshops, helping them out by giving them an audience whilst their own physical premises are closed. The books I’ve listed are not all about gardening, but worth a look through and an order anyway as they are wonderful and have seen me through lockdown – and I hope they bring you some joy too! Check out the books I recommend here.
Hedge laying is something I’ve been meaning to try for a long time, a type of pruning that can bring huge benefits to wildlife as well as looking amazing. So last year I went down to Dorset/the edge of Devon, to spend a day learning to lay a hedge. Hedge laying is a way of building a stock proof fence. It does take time, and some practical and physical skill, but once you get the hang of it I would think developing your instinct about what to prune and where to lay the branches is where the true proficiency arises… …