THE MODERN MINT BLOG
Hello and happy new year all you Modern Minters!
Hope you are well and making it through ‘Dry January’/ ‘No Cake New Year’ / ‘Resolving To Stick With My Resolutions This Time‘…. or whatever tough aim you are seeking to achieve right now. I just hope it goes well for you!
I want to share with you some thoughts on our packaging.
- Boxes made from recycled paper. Sometimes we re-use a box that we have a received from someone else. When we do this, we try to cover up the tatty parts with the Modern Mint label.
- These boxes can be composted. Making your own compost and adding it to your flower borders is a brilliant way to improve the soil in your garden and reduce your carbon footprint.
- We also reuse bubble wrap, when we send out something easily damaged like a whetstone. This bubble wrap comes from our suppliers, or from items we may have ordered for personal use. (Like bottles of gin.)
- Occasionally we use a foam, you know that awful light, white stuff that comes in little bits that go everywhere when you open the packet. We don’t use this often, but we got some once from a supplier and it is useful when you need to cushion something fragile. The foam bits we are recycling from our supplier are biodegradable, so that is a plus point.
- We add scrunched up bits of Kraft paper to fill gaps in the boxes and stop your items smashing around as they are delivered to you. If we can recycle a bit of newspaper, we will use this too.
- Our tape is packing tape, the brown stuff. It works well but is a bit rubbish when it doesn’t break down in the compost heap. We are going to look at using paper tape this spring.
Most of the time we deliver with the Royal Mail. They are coming to your house anyway, so there is one less extra van on the road. Bigger items we may use Parcel Force, or very occasionally another courier.
Here is what other people are doing about plastic waste….
The Mayor of London’s scheme to reduce plastic packaging.
Riverford Organic and the counter-intuitive idea that plastic bags are better for the environment that paper ones. Interesting reading, yes….?
We hope you all have a fantastic 2018, keep thinking about the environment and do all you can to make your garden a place where life expands, not contracts!
Phillyrea is one of my favourite plants for topiary. I have been using it for quite a few years as a specimen shrub, mostly due to the fact it clips well and has a tough habit – all good characteristics for a topiary plant. It also has a reputation for being an excellent nectar source for bees… Read more about Phillyrea here. Mentioning this to Malcolm Thicke, a market garden historian and writer, he sent me a some photos of topiary and phillyrea mentioned by John Worlidge in Systema Horticulturae from 1682…. incredible! He also mentioned to me that in …
Kites and Strings is a podcast about creativity, hosted by US-based Stephen Ploum and Catherine Chinnock. Back in March they asked me to come onto their podcast and talk about topiary, my past writing plays, the stand-up I did and how creativity can fit into your life. The Kites and Strings podcast was great fun and Stephen and Catherine are fantastic hosts. Listening back today I am surprised by some of the ideas I talked about (somehow I even started to describe a future where I run a ‘School of Creativity’ by the sea…. where did that come from?!) but it …
Robinia is often forgotten – by me, actually! – when thinking of plants for topiary. But when I work on it I do love it, brittle and soft as the wood is if you climb into it. But that danger of snapping a branch with a heavy step and falling out of the tree aside, I love it for the dappled light it allows into the garden space. Robinia Near The Sea Below is a Robinia I have gently clipped over the last few years, down near Leigh-on-Sea in Essex. The tree was large when I arrived, although it is …