THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Nov02

Modern Mint at 300

 

Modern Mint Reaches 300 Blog Posts!

Less than 3 years since we started blogging at Modern Mint, we have reached our 300th blog post today, with this one! 300!

It has been a monumental effort by a few different people (Darren, quite a lot, Chloe, a fair bit, then some other fantastic garden writers too…)

There have been some amazing and incredibly useful posts along the way. Some awful ones too (hands up again Darren!) But it goes without saying that you need to throw yourself out there and do it, in order to find your voice.

And after 300 blog posts we think Modern Mint really has got its voice.

The First Blog at Modern Mint was a short little number. We started our days as a garden design outfit here in Chelmsford, Essex and that is reflected in the blog. The website was 5 pages wide. These pages consisted of:

  1. homepage
  2. about page
  3. contact page
  4. blog
  5. portfolio

The Modern Mint green was a lighter shade, rather than the little olive number we have now. Even the logo had a different tag line…

logo_02

The second stage of the Modern Mint blog was a call to arms for gardeners. We wrote extensively about best gardening practise and interviewed lots of wonderful people in the horticultural industry, who spoke passionately and with great clarity on their specialist subjects.

For example, we wondered where the herbicide loving gardeners had gone? John Walker told us about earth friendly gardening. Flower grower Carole Patilla shared her thoughts on growing flowers. And we met a cycling gardener from Liverpool who inspired us immensely with his new business.

Our most popular blog of this time, one still linked to often and helping people get out and garden is this one…

9 Ideas for a Cut Flower Business

We also ran several projects at the Chelsea Fringe, one year curating an ebook of 100 word essays on gardening, by gardeners. You can read ‘Contemporary Green’ here, for FREE.

The third stage of the Modern Mint blog is when we really came into our own. We updated the website, taking out the portfolio and turning it into a full-time shop – because that is what you wanted from us!

We kept being asked what we thought the best tools were for use in the garden, or the best garden furniture or if this product could really be of use…. or did we have anything to give a difficult family member at Christmas, as a gift?

We knew from the queries that we were curating some remarkable products that people would appreciate. Rooting them in the garden, or the natural world, or giving them an air of the earth friendly (check out this brilliant book, for example!) helped us forge our identity as an online shop with a grand following.

“Thank you for sending me my lovely Nunki a few weeks ago. I loved the kind and simple way it was packed – with bits of wool. I have recommended your site to another friend who will be buying a Nunki from you very soon.”

A satisfied customer, recently… who then bought our last Nunki weeder. We hope to have some back in stock soon…! Keep checking back!

The Modern Mint blog now tells you about why we have certain products on here. Why we use them. How you can get the best from them.

That really is where we are at – Modern Mint at 300 – an online (and Christmas Fairs) shop with a love of the natural.

Do check out the rest of the blog – we have been 300 posts in getting here!

Mar19

Wasting Water

Well worth a read in the BBC today – a note on how wasting water in the UK “as socially unacceptable as blowing smoke in the face of a baby.” Read the report here. I have written a talk about how we use water in the  garden. It was written when I moved from Hampshire to Essex and found out for myself just how dry this area of the UK is. It completely changed the way I garden. The lack of such a precious resource as water made me question what we can do to save it, store it and …

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Mar14

The Foie Gras That Tastes Like Nature

Ethical Foie Gras? Is That A Real Thing?   Foie gras – can it be ‘grown’ ethically? The video showing how this farmer works suggests it can… We first read about this in a book called The Third Plate by Dan Barber. I loved it and I love how Eduardo the farmer, who farms on the Dehesa in Spain, has a ‘take half leave half rule’. When talking about how the geese eat his olives… “They’re always quite fair. If you make sure the geese are relaxed and happy, you’ll be rewarded with the gift of fatty livers. That is God’s …

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Mar04

Hardy Orchids Via James Wong

Hardy orchids – here is a subject I would love to know more about – so lo and behold, James Wong has written about it in the Guardian! Read the article about hardy orchids here. I love having orchids in the house, just your usual run of the mill buy them in any shop orchids, but it is a pleasure to read about the plants that will grow outside and cope with this weather. (This insane weather! From the hottest days of February on record to Storm Freya, all within a week. Weather is always such a factor in gardening, but …

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