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Looking to pick your brains

21 February 2017 12:57:31

Hi everyone.

It's looking like I'll be taking the road from Dublin to Cavan in the next couple of weeks.

I seem to remember a large garden centre on that road, but can't recall the name. Does anyone have any idea what it'd be, or have an recommendations for good garden centres/nurseries that I could visit that stock something a wee bit different?

Fleurette Fleurette 21 February 2017 18:11:43

What about Ratoath, near Swords, Conrad?  Lovely restaurant as well. All home made.  Owner is quite a character.

Conrad, you were brilliant on BBC Radio Ulster Gardeners' Corner on Saturday morning. The whole story came over so well.  I can see you trundling down the road and round the corner with your wheelbarrow filled with a wonderful tropical specimen carefully strapped in! I imagine the warm(er) weather will be a help in establishing your plants in their new home.  But strong winds from the NW ???? And then the E? Yet, how exciting to have the challenge of gardening under different conditions, albeit only round the corner! New choices to be made.  New experiences.  Another talk in a couple of years.  Very best wishes. 


Baile Baile 21 February 2017 22:23:43

Hi Conrad, there's one called Pergola Nursery on the Ballyjamesduff Rd.  In Virginia. Hope that might Help? 

Scrubber Scrubber 21 February 2017 23:28:04

Hi Conrad, welcome back. Are you going to settle in cavan????

Keego Keego 22 February 2017 18:24:01

Hi Conrad the big one that you are referring to was probably plantagen which went out of business last year or the year before. Pergola is good but in my opinion a bit on the pricey side but he carries a lot of stock. Ratoath gets my vote but it is a bit of a diversion of the N3 It is ran by John Lord and he is very knowledgable -he has a lovely big garden out the back all planted up so you can see height texture colour combinations etc and on the few occasions I have been there he has always found something a bit different for me and thrown in the odd freebie. The restaurant is really good with lots of wholesome food and some very nice cakes which I know you are partial to!. I hope if you are going to be coming to Cavan that you will come to visit me at some point when the garden wakes up, I missed your piece on the radio i tried to listen to it on the player but would not work. BTW i have signed up for Jimi;s course again starting Sunday could not resist so enjoyed it last time.

Mary B Mary B 23 February 2017 17:53:42

I also heard you on BBC Ulster and enjoyed the piece, best of luck with the new garden!

Keego, you can get that show easily as a podcast, that is normally how i listen to it.

Conrad Conrad 24 February 2017 13:11:14

That's two votes for Ratoath, I'll have to Google. 

Thanks Margot, it was an enjoyable morning having the crew around, they'll be back again in a few weeks as things develop. It's those Easterlies that will be do the damage, most plants haven't objected too much to the shift. 

Thanks Baile, I'll check out Pergola nurseries online too, it's all very dependant on time, I may end up having to fly up the road with little chance to stop off.

Cavan would be much to chilly for a soft coastal gardener like myself Scrubber!

Conrad Conrad 24 February 2017 13:17:23

That's the one Mary! Sorry to hear that it has closed, I might take a scoot out to Johnstown when in Dublin, it'd be rude not to!

I'd love to visit you some time Mary, same invitation is of course open to you  if you're up on the north coast. :) That's open to any Garden.iers too, you're all such a nice bunch!

if you Google the gardeners corner podcast you'll be able to catch it. 

Doing Jimi's course again, I'm not even jealous, not one bit! (lies)

Thanks Mary B, it'Lloyd be fun trying different plants that'll enjoy stage sunny conditions.

I've nothing more to add.

11 April 2016 10:06:26


Joann Joann 11 April 2016 10:08:10

he is so gorgeous I could just forgive him anything!

fran m fran m 11 April 2016 12:04:33

This just strengthens my arguments against a dog here, happy enough to be tagged as the worste parents ever on this topic LOL

Super photo all the same, and his writing is excellent Conrad!!

LindaB LindaB 11 April 2016 12:30:40

Awwwwww cute but glad he is living with you and not me!  My kids would love him!!!!!

fraoch fraoch 11 April 2016 13:32:18

Cute ok, but I couldn't cope with it either!

TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 11 April 2016 14:39:41

Aw again!

Jacky Quirke Jacky Quirke 11 April 2016 18:01:53

oops at least he left a note

Jackie Jackie 11 April 2016 18:48:00

Hee hee, yep we have that problem here too!! although we dont have the 'rare' plants. Mine love a 'salad' occasionally, if its green we can eat it!!! A little cutie!

JoanG JoanG 11 April 2016 19:39:20

Another excuse for plant buying Conrad! 

Keego Keego 11 April 2016 22:55:26

He is lovely Conrad fun and games ahead

Scrubber Scrubber 11 April 2016 23:20:35

In all the times our dear Dooley lived with us he NEVER swallowed as much as a daisy-he did sit on my camassias. Whats the little divil's name? Wonderful photo!

TinaJ TinaJ 12 April 2016 08:16:40

Ah thats nothing .Wait til the digging starts and there is roots and compost everywhere lol

Conrad Conrad 12 April 2016 11:28:24

We'll leave him at yours for a few days and see if you feel the ame Joann. ;-)

Swings and roundabouts Fran, wanton destruction balanced with the extra dimension that they bring to the household. I resisted their harping on for years but it was me that got one in the end.

They would Linda, every child that sees him wants a pat and a cuddle, and he loves the attention!

I'm just about holding together Fraoch!

He gets that reaction a lot Hazel.


Conrad Conrad 12 April 2016 11:28:36

Jacky yup, a note and a trail of destruction. ;-)

My variegated kale was a favourite of his Jackie, note I said was. He demolished it!

Joan! I like your thinking!!

We'll take the rough with the smooth Mary.

Scrubber, I'm sending him to your for obedience training. He's called Benson.

I'm hesitant to write this Tina....but there has been very little digging.


01 May 2015 10:03:36

I was given a few small bulbs of this Erythronium a couple of years ago and this spring a couple have decided to flower.
Nice pink blooms and good foliage, it's a nice un.

PeterW PeterW 01 May 2015 10:35:16

Very nice

Jacinta D Jacinta D 01 May 2015 10:49:52

That's lovely. It seems to be taller than most Erythroniums?

Conrad Conrad 01 May 2015 11:03:42

Thanks Peter.
I'd say it's about 10-12cm or so Jacinta.

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 01 May 2015 12:26:51

A nice gift.

Kathrin Kathrin 01 May 2015 18:16:42

so pretty, love the elegance of it 

Mary B Mary B 01 May 2015 21:40:51

Yes very elegant, like those a lot

fran m fran m 01 May 2015 22:52:30


TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 02 May 2015 14:19:24

Deinitely have to get some for next year! That's a beauty!

Conrad Conrad 02 May 2015 22:36:18

Thanks all.
Yup Hazel, a great addition to the spring garden.

Scrubber Scrubber 10 April 2016 22:30:57

So glad to see you back.Or maybe Ive just been unlucky and missed your recent journals? I have to get some of those erythroniums. They must take a while to come to flower then?

Conrad Conrad 12 April 2016 11:31:20

I'm here, loitering, never really went away Peter.

It depends on the size of the bulbs, the ones I was given were very small. They'd look great in the scrub.

Another wrong 'un.

27 April 2015 12:27:35

This is another small Narcissus that's flowering now.

It was bought as 'Snipe' (named for the bird) which should have long pale flowers with swept back petals, but has actually turned out to be 'Jack Snipe'.
Nice enough and supposedly a great one for naturalising if you've the space.

JoanG JoanG 27 April 2015 15:42:25

Had to laugh Conrad, as the same happened to me when I bought what I thought was Narcissus 'Jenny', a nice small daff similar to your 'W P Milner', and it turned out to be a bigger one altogether called 'Peeping Jenny' which I don't like.  'Jack Snipe' does look nice!

Periwinkle Periwinkle 27 April 2015 19:03:26

I love any that have swept back petals.  They  seem to be rushing into a headwind!!

PeterW PeterW 27 April 2015 20:35:05

Always happens me especially ones I am really looking forward to. I like that tho

Fleurette Fleurette 27 April 2015 23:11:40

Whst's that you said, Peri?  Headwind?  None of that around here.  Oh dear, those pots have just taken off, daffodils and all!  And they are not even Jack Snipe.

Jackie Jackie 28 April 2015 07:13:38

Lol Margot. 

Another lovely one. 

TerriShoos TerriShoos 28 April 2015 09:33:19

A daff by any other name - it's a beauty whatever it is. 

Conrad Conrad 28 April 2015 15:36:01

Peter and Joan, that's the touble with bulbs you don't knwo what you're getting so have to trust the seller.

As do I Dorothy, I'll be looking out for more with the windswept look in the autumn.

Thanks everyone.

Litt'e 'un

27 April 2015 12:16:08

This is a small variety, subtle and graceful with milky white petals and hanging heads. It's definitely old fashioned being over 100 years old, raised my Mr Backhouse and named W.P. Milner.

One of my favourites of those that I grow.

JoanG JoanG 27 April 2015 15:39:43

Yes, I like that one!

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 27 April 2015 15:42:53

One of my favourites too.

Periwinkle Periwinkle 27 April 2015 18:58:25


PeterW PeterW 27 April 2015 20:36:54

One I must get, very nice

fraoch fraoch 27 April 2015 20:42:57

Oh, it's gorgeous.

fran m fran m 27 April 2015 21:49:56

Like that one Conrad

Fleurette Fleurette 27 April 2015 23:04:57

YES, YES, that is a lovely one, Conrad. if you ever have any  spare bulbs, please add my name to the waiting lust! Sorry meant list.

Mary B Mary B 27 April 2015 23:14:16

Yes I definitely prefer the paler daffs, that is lovely

Jackie Jackie 28 April 2015 07:12:19

Little beauty. 

Conrad Conrad 28 April 2015 15:34:16

Thanks all, another of Taylors bulb range so not too hard to track down.

Margot, I will of course keep you in mind. :)


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