THE MODERN MINT BLOG
I have visited two new clubs this week to present a garden talk. They were in different parts of the country and so a lot of driving, but worth every hour sat on the motorway in traffic!
The talks went well and I have had some lovely feedback…
“Thank you so much for providing a presentation which was an almost impossible mix of enthusiasm, joy, entertainment, education and inspiration.
They say that laughter is the best medicine and there was certainly plenty of that, and everyone left with a smile on their face, but just as important is that it helps those bits of new knowledge slip in and take root as well.”
Rosie, Welwyn Garden City Gardening Club
When I first started doing the talks to clubs 4 years ago I was a nervous wreck beforehand, wanting it to go well and be entertaining as much as informative. If people are kind enough to give up an evening to listen to you, they must get something in return right?
I still get nervous, but have worked hard and spent time and money trying to improve my presentation skills, so that I can do as clear and light a talk to a group as I can. To get these skills I have worked with Logan Murray, who taught stand-up comedians Rhod Gilbert and Greg Davies, as well as John Gordillo who directed the likes of Reginald D Hunter (this video of him contains swearing), Ross Noble, Dylan Moran, Sean Lock and Eddie Izzard.
“We all thought your talk was superb last night; you are undoubtedly our best speaker. I think it was your calm manner that put me at ease, and for once, I was able to be a spectator, and enjoy the evening too.
We will definitely invite you again and I’ll bear in mind contacting you first if a speaker drops out, rather than heading straight to the Sloe Gin cupboard.”
Sheila, Bishopstone Garden Club
Though I will say there is nothing wrong with a visit to the sloe gin cupboard!
Please do take a look at this page – Garden Club Speaker – for details about my talks. I am happy to travel and do my utmost to make the evening as good as possible for your club.
I am running a ‘Topiary Provocation’ for garden designers, via Zoom, over the next few weeks. Dates are: Tuesday 23rd March, 10am Wednesday 24th March 7.30pm Thursday 8th April, 7.30pm The ‘provocation’ is for garden designers anywhere in the world, is free to join and will last about 45 minutes. Places are limited to 12 per session, as I want to make sure we can share ideas about topiary and how it can be used (and managed) in a modern garden – especially if skill level and maintenance time is low. I hope that I can provoke a discussion around …
A talk by the team at Waltham Place is being given on April 14th 2021, at 2.15pm. Tickets are free and it is via Zoom. Get Your Free Ticket I am hosting, the talk is set up by the European Boxwood & Topiary Society and it promises to be an extraordinary hour looking at one of my absolute favourite gardens of all time. (Designed by one of my favourite garden writer’s….) Brilliant topiary and a philosophy of gardening that puts wildlife first, I absolutely cannot wait for this talk… do join in and book your free ticket. Get A Waltham …
Alternatives to boxwood are hard to come by – nothing has the small, easy to clip, reflective leaf of a boxwood shrub. But as we reach April and the boxwood caterpillar begins to wake up, hungry to defoliate our boxwood topiaries and hedges, you may wonder what plant you can use as a replacement in the garden should the worst happen – and the caterpillar destroys all! (For more information on the boxwood caterpillar, visit the European Boxwood & Topiary Society website. Their research and hard work has meant all is not lost in the fight to rid the UK …