THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Nov06

Recommended Reading: Planting Diaries – Sian Rees

Came across this post a little while back, about ‘A Revival of English Topiary’.

Great little look at the clipped trees of the Dutch being brought to the UK, with fantastic photos and ideas on what were the most popular figures….

“Pyramids, mop-heads and blunt cones… sitting hens, geese and ducks are common designs, and to protect the verdant poultry one may obtain equally verdant dogs.”

Verdant dogs? I love that! Sounds like a pulp fiction novel, a blood lust of a Western, rather than a 14 year old figurative yew plant placed as a visual joke into an English garden!

planting diaries

Not often you come across a well-written blog, with enough information to be useful too, but I was inspired by this.

Check it out – Planting Diaries: A Revivial Of English Topiary

Or take a look at some recent work of mine… Organic Blobs, 18 Months Apart

May10

Transforming Topiary

topiary transforming

Transforming Topiary – a video made for the European Boxwood And Topiary Society by Charlotte Molesworth and I, in her garden. We take a dog topiary and work out how to update it, turning it into a bird. Worth a watch I think, and hopefully useful to you! You can see more of my clipping on the topiary page. Or read my Spring 2021 Topiary Provocation here.

Apr28

Phillyrea From 1682

Worlidge Phillyrea

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 …

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Apr27

Kites And Strings Podcast – Topiary In The Garden

kites and strings podcast

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 …

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