THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Dec03

Why Young People Don’t Garden

I get asked this a lot.

“Why do young people not garden? How come we cannot get younger people to come and inject new life into our garden club?”

I believe the answer is a simple one.

They don’t have the space. Houses are getting smaller, land per square metre is expensive and most new developments seem to put more and more living spaces into land that use to be used as a garden.

Learning to garden is about being practical. Try something, see what works, fail, try again the next season. If you don’t have the space, you will never get the chance to try. This for me is the biggest and simplest reason for young people not getting into gardening.

They have no gardens to practise on.

Why are the All Blacks such a good rugby side? Because their is a history of the game drenched into the Kiwi culture. Space is made for it (there is a lot of land to use after all!) and each generation passes on its passion for the game. This constant wave of rugby understanding (whether good or bad) gets the game into he conscious and subconscious minds of the young. They know rugby, whether they eventually like it or not.

Why do so many children play with iPhones or other mobiles? Because every single parent has one, and uses it throughout the day. It once again diffuses its culture into the minds of those who are learning and growing.

Growing up, we had what I would consider to be an average garden for most people. Space to kick a football around, climb the apple tree, play with the dog. Now a garden that size would be considered enormous, on newer estates.

I really found my gardening skills grew, as did my passion, when I became an apprentice gardener to a lad who gardened 30 acres of land and had to grow vegetables, fruits in the orchard, maintain herbaceous borders, mow lawns and generally make sure the estate was looking great.

The space was there, as was the sheer weight of different skills needed, that forced me to get better at gardening. I could afford to test things out (plants, techniques, timings of jobs) knowing I had the resources and help around me to make it better if it really didn’t work out. I learnt a lot, fast. I had the space to grow into the challenge.

My passion grew as my skills are forced to.

People can certainly love gardening, watching it on the TV or seeing inspiring programmes on Youtube…

(Just check out the Luis Barragan section from around 9 minutes or so in….)

But when those people only have a window box to garden in, how can they really gain the skills they need to transform the people around them? Or the next generation?

We are eroding our gardening culture because the space we have is not allowing people to learn what they need to learn, on the job, for better or worse.

Make our gardens a space we can garden in, with a variety of plants and elements, and you will see people garden and grow their passion.

Then you will see an influx in young people going to garden clubs, because they will be hungry to know more.

 

Mar24

Shears Or Power Tools?

Shears or power tools? What is best to use? The Joy Of Shears I love my Okatsune shears, the beautifully balanced red and white handled pruning shears from Japan. They do everything you need, whether giving a little extra detail to a topiary piece or bashing their way through a hawthorn or beech hedge that boundaries a garden. Another pair of shears you may wish for, that are far sharper than any power tool ever needs to be, is this Tobisho made pair of curved, steel blades… They are basically two samurai swords bolted together. So sharp they could cut …

READ MORE

Mar21

Bite Size History Of Running A Small Business

small business talks

A potted history of my small business, inspired by the wonderful bite size blog posts of how Charles Boyle has run CB Editions, so I thought I would do something similar for Modern Mint. Well, with Coronoavirus hitting I have the time to get all nostalgic…. Moved to Essex from Hampshire, going from a list of relentlessly busy garden maintenance jobs in huge gardens whilst spending evenings and weekends doing project planting and lawn care work to… nothing. Went to Japan for two weeks, a gift to myself for making the move away from a job where I was such a …

READ MORE

Mar20

Second Hand Tobisho Topiary Shears

tobisho topiary shears

My Tobisho Topiary Shears are up for sale! Browse Here If you are a tool nerd, or a boxwood geek or just a fan of beautiful, handmade items then these are for you! I am refreshing my tool bag and, as these wonderful shears are so rare, thought I would offer to someone with a lust for this kind of thing. Check them out – Tobisho Topiary Shears.