THE MODERN MINT BLOG
My new talk for 2019 ‘A Very British Garden’ has now been given to a few garden clubs in the UK. If you wish to book me for another talk, then you can find my talk subjects here – Garden Club Speaker.
A Very British Garden
Is about what I see when I work on gardens in the UK, the problems that I am consistently asked to solve – like bare fences, smelly compost, why boxwood plants are being defoliated and how come slugs are eating all the lettuce….
It has been great fun to write and I hope you will book it soon.
Below are notes for those who have heard it and wish to learn more….
The Alternative Plant List
- Rose ‘Madame Alfred Carriere’
- Jasmine ‘Clotted Cream’
- Trachelospermum jasminoides
- Campsis radicans
- Carpenteria californica
- Abeliophyllum distichum
- Magnolia wilsonii
- Stewartia pseudocamellia
I realise that, to those who have not seen the talk, this will sound like an odd list. In the talk, all is explained. Honest.
You can read about a few more plants that garden designer Dan Pearson recommends here.
- Phoenix Perennial Plants
- Marchants Hardy Plants
- Hards Cottage Garden Plants
- Crug Farm
- Great Dixter
There are loads more independent nurseries out there, sharing great garden plants. Go seek them out!
Great seeds, great tasting vegetables, all to be saved and shared. Growing fantastic vegetables is a brilliant way to make a British garden something special. Use them!
Find out more here how to cope with the devastating caterpillar and moth. And check your boxwood plants this spring for the webbing! It is up to those of us who garden to be on the lookout for this caterpillar that is defoliating both gardening wild boxwood all over the UK and Europe. It has no natural predators – except the keen-eyed gardener who wants to make a difference.
So please do check your boxwood plants!
Balmoral Cottage, The Garden Of Charlotte Molesworth
My topiary mentor is opening her garden in Kent through 2019. Dates can be seen here, as well as details for how to stay in the Potting Shed in the garden.
Use these on your garden soil, on your plant leaves and in your compost heap. They strengthen plant immune systems and bring life to your garden. Find out more about beneficial microbes (and even give them a try for your own health… not the garden ones, obviously, the ones you can drink everyday for more energy!)
Finally, Use A Green Energy Supplier
This is surely a no brainer (along with going peat free on your compost!) The simplest and easiest change you can make to help reduce your carbon footprint and keep the earth from becoming a terrible place. We use Bulb and recommend you do too. There are financial benefits for us both, as well as the moral one.
And they make it simple to switch, even paying your fees if you have any for leaving your current energy supplier early.
Check out how you (and the planet) can benefit from using Green Energy now.
I recently wrote a piece for Topiarius magazine, the flagship publication of the European Boxwood & Topiary Society – of which Modern Mint is both a member and big supporter. Check out the EBTS here. They frequently run courses and talks too, so worth keeping an eye on. Below is the piece I wrote about the tools I use when making topiary and pruning trees…. Darren’s Piece In Topiarius Magazine I use Okatsune Secateurs, which I started pruning with when working on a large orchard in Hampshire. My Felco’s were too difficult to open with cold hands, but the chunky …
Just inc are you are free in the following dates in June, you can visit my mentor Charlotte Molesworth’s topiary garden… Check out the dates the garden is open here. And you can of course join both Charlotte and I for a topiary workshop in the garden in July, as well as September. Hope to see you there!
The Nunki weeder has been talked about by Jane Perrone in the newspaper (the Guardian, if you are interested. At the weekend.) She said this about our lovely weeding tool… “Getting on top of annual weeds such as hairy bittercress and speedwell can be tedious. The Nunki weeder has a curved blade that allows for precision work around plants….” There you go – a weeder for precision work, not an avocado destoner as someone once said to me. Take a closer look at the Nunki weeder now.