THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Mar19

When Working Off A Ladder Takes Too Long

I saw this a few months back.

Not exactly sure I know what to feel about it:

  • Cutting during the growing season when birds and other wildlife are nesting.
  • Having to do this each year, with the high carbon footprint attached to it, when it may be less environmentally damaging to cut down the trees close to the cables and replant more in a better, more open space?
  • And then of course, there is the use of a freaking helicopter with a freaking rotating blade on a freaking swinging cable being arced around next to live POWER LINES!!!!!!!

I guess you either glory in man’s (and I would put money on it being a man that thought to do this) ability to conquer nature with machines.

Or you marvel at the quality of the flying and care taken by the pilot, whilst wondering if it is no more than finding a solution to a problem that could be designed away before the helicopter and the saw are even needed?

My instinct is to look closer at the latter.

For more on my topiary and pruning work, made far more gently with shears and secateurs, visit The Artisans series in the Guardian.

Sep29

New Topiary In South London Out Of Yew

Making a new topiary out of the large, dull facade of a Taxus blob… My work was to change it up from a ‘jelly drop’ shape and give it texture, open it out and let the light through, and make it a sculptural feature in the background of the garden in summer… yet a major part of the garden in winter. A few more years before it becomes something special, but there was far more leaf and growth inside the plant than I thought and so it will not take too long for it to gain in character and become …

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Sep27

Topiary Teacher – Put on The Spot!

topiary teacher

Two weeks ago I was invited to teach topiary at the garden of Griselda Kerr, the author of The Apprehensive Gardener. I love teaching and sharing skills, but I was placed on the spot in the afternoon and asked to show how I would make a new topiary from an existing shrub. So below is a speeded-up video of me creating a cloud-pruned topiary from an old boxwood tree. I particularly love the ending when the class get involved….! See the video here. One hour was all it took, and though it needed a little tidying-up, it was made by …

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Sep27

Book Yourself A Topiary Workshop 2022

organic topiary snow

Charlotte Molesworth, my topiary mentor, and I are running our popular topiary workshop again in 2022. You can email me for details – or go here for information, your ticket and to find out about dates. Book A Spot On A Topiary Workshop, September 2022