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The Best Sustainable Garden Twine Out There

Garden twine|December 08, 2022
Selection of Twool garden twine on a raised bed

Twine is one of those essential yet overlooked items in our gardening toolbox. We use it for everything from tying in plants, supporting plants while they grow, using the stick and string method to ensure straight rows when sowing seeds, and many many more uses. I always try to keep a length of string in my back pocket around the garden, as it will inevitably be useful on several occasions throughout the day.

Person using garden twine to tie canes together into a wigwam to support vegetables

But not all garden twine is created equal. Some break or rot through long before they really should, leaving plants to snap or fall to the ground. Other twines are made from plastics produced using fossil fuels and contain numerous nasties that you really don’t want in your soil. More often than not, your roll of garden twine has been made on the other side of the planet and been transported all the way to your garden shed via ship or aeroplane at substantial cost to the environment.

In my hunt for the best sustainable garden twine out there, I came across the Twool brand, which is made here in the UK using the wool from regenerative farms.

Is it strong enough? If you’ve ever been hiking through British mountains on a wet and blustery winter’s day while wrapped up in your thermals and waterproofs, you’ll have noticed the hardy sheep nonchalantly going about their business, nibbling grass without a care in the world. This is because they are protected by their natural coat - wool - which is extremely strong and weather resistant. This strength is exactly what you’re looking for in your garden when you want to ensure your bean wigwams and tomato supports stay intact throughout the growing season. 

Despite its hardiness, wool is also soft to touch. This means that unlike wire, which can damage plants, Twool will ensure your plants are cushioned and supported while growing. 

Twool garden twine supporting tomatoes growing in a polytunnel

Sustainability is an important consideration for gardeners buying supplies, and twine should be no different. Wool is an abundant, underused, high quality resource, available right here in the UK, which reduces the use of fossil fuels used to produce and transport conventional twine. It’s natural and unlike synthetic alternatives, if it ends up in your soil, it will do good, not harm. That’s because wool releases nitrogen to the soil as it biodegrades, which will help to feed your plants. And while we’re talking about soil, it’s important to note that the wool for Twool is collected from regenerative farms. That means the farmers use good land management practices that naturally improve the soil, such as rotational grazing. This looks after the wealth of soil life below ground, resulting in more nutritious growth above ground.

Twool isn’t just good for the planet, it’s good for people too. From the farmers in Dartmoor who rear the sheep to the spinners and weavers in Yorkshire who turn the wool into twine, the entire process is carried out in the UK and people are treated ethically and paid a fair price.  So you can be assured that the twine is sourced and produced ethically, sustainably and with traceability.

But the real heroes of Twool are those that produce the fantastic material in the first place - the sheep! The wool comes from rare breed Whiteface Dartmoor sheep. They have been grazing on Dartmoor since Saxon times and are well adapted to its upland pastures and moors. They are an important part of our heritage, but are now classified as ‘at risk’, according to the Whiteface Dartmoor Sheep Breeders’ Association. By using their wool, Twool are helping to promote and protect one of Britain’s ancient breeds. 

Bunch of herbs tied together with Twool garden twine

I have equally been impressed by the quality of Twool, and assured of its sustainability credentials, so it’s currently top of my go-to list for garden twine. If you'd like to treat yourself to some spools of Twool, or perhaps buy a gardener's gift box for a friend, have a look at the selection we have available here.