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Dick's Garden

Dick's Garden













Gooseberries Robins and Roses

19 November 2017 20:39:48

I had a bumper crop of gooseberries this year. I had quite a  lot picked when things went wrong. The plan was to make gooseberry jam which I had made for decades. I put over 8 lbs into the fridge and hoped that i would get the time to make the jam but  between hospitalisation and other factors, the jame was not made. So between the fruit which I picked in June and the others which were devoured by the birds, none was made at the appropriate time. Recently when I seemed to have the time, the only thing I could do was to throw them into the compost heap. 

Roses seemed to be very good in June, then things went wrong. I still have a few. Normally I would have them until December. The recent frost didn't do much for them. Some of them, on the rose tree were almost as big as my hand.

My feathered friend, the robin,  comes to me quite often  Sometimes he comes in the back door for his food. Often when I go outside he is there waiting for me so when some bird seed is put in his box, he is in. Recently when I raked the leaves, and we seemed to have a lot this year, he comes along to pick up any live objects which probably is his favourite.

DeclanTipp DeclanTipp 19 November 2017 21:36:26

The resident robin master of his domain . One here too Dick and he follows me about just in case ......

Jacinta D Jacinta D 19 November 2017 21:44:38

Resident robins here too, Dick. But also wrens, who are as welcome as robins.

Scrubber Scrubber 19 November 2017 23:04:54

Oh dear sad about the gooseberries but the fact that you are better more than compensates!

TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 19 November 2017 23:52:30

Such a shame about the gooseberries Dick but that rose looks great! This year I popped the raspberries and blackberries into freezer instead of the fridge so I can make the jam as it is needed! 

Jackie Jackie 20 November 2017 19:29:01

Glad to hear you are better Dick. The little Robins here are great and so friendly. Lovely rose too!

edulis edulis 22 November 2017 21:04:26

This year, on the advice of a Polish gardener friend, I added half a large jar of gooseberries to almost half a jar of vodka and topped up with organic sugar.  After a few weeks drained the liquid (delicious in small glasses) and at a later date I used the gooseberries which made a luxury desert with cream.  I had also added a few lemon verbena leaves for some extra flavour.  This was also done with my thornless blackberries in the same way and even more delicious. Rhubarb and plums work too.  It is much quicker than making jam.  Anyone know a reasonable source of vodka??


27 October 2017 17:31:41

Here we have a later photo of the Liquidambar. I took a photo early on but not very much colour other than green. Then came storms Ophelia and Brian and I was afraid that the foliage was all gone. I would have expected something better if these storms had not come. To day started with fog, not very easy to drive although I did. Later it turned out to be a pleasant day. I took the photo. Here it is. The photos were taken from two views, same tree.

JoanG JoanG 27 October 2017 19:23:30

It's a splendid tree, Dick, and has held plenty of foliage despite the storms. 

Jacinta D Jacinta D 27 October 2017 21:59:50

It's a tree that has been on my wish list for quite a while. Lovely. It was a very crisp morning here, and stayed very clear and bright all day.

Dick Dick 27 October 2017 22:12:40

Have you room for it Jacinta? I have it for some years and one thing about it is that it seems to have grown quite a bit, this year. If you have room for it, then it is worth having. The time we had the two storms, Ophelia and Brian, it would have been worth seeingand photo taken. However the storms took a lot from it. True Joan, it held its foliage.

Jacinta D Jacinta D 28 October 2017 05:40:21

No, Dick. I don't. But I do remember seeing a slender type that Fran got a few years ago which would suit a small garden nicely.

fraoch fraoch 28 October 2017 13:13:06

Lovely colours in spite of the storms.

Scrubber Scrubber 28 October 2017 22:20:28

Its a lovely specimen Dick. mine weathered both storms well but is fading fast.

Jackie Jackie 29 October 2017 08:37:42

 What a beauty and so glad it survived those storms. 

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 29 October 2017 08:49:43

A fantastic tree, Dick.

DeclanTipp DeclanTipp 29 October 2017 15:09:17

A friend lost her 12 year old tree and was very upset too 


TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 29 October 2017 19:49:00

Your Liquidamber always makes me long to have one but I never seem to get around to it!

See previous entry

24 October 2017 15:01:00

I had a problem with the camera but it woks again. Note the robin on one who follows me a lot, probably for food! Thanks to Craig for rectifying the problem on page.

Thanks to Brian

23 October 2017 17:41:31

Ophelia passed over my place. While it was not welcome, it didn't seem to do much damage. I noticed a branch that came off the liquidambar but unless you saw the branch on the ground, you would not miss it. Storm Brian seemed less dangerous and yet when I went out the back which faces south, I noticed something. At first it seemed superfluous. To day was a beautiful  day, good temperature and no wind, not what you would expect in late October. I went out with secateurs and pruning saw. Some branches were removed. A pair of loppers took over later on and more wood was removed. Eventually  I had decided to call it a day, remembering the operation I had. I will return perhaps to morrow. The amount of damage done to cultivated plants was small. It was mainly trees which were there when I came here in 1977. One tree that I noticed to day lay horizontally and as a result I was unable to get at work I had done with roses and the like. However, bit by bit I will get it under control. Sorry the camera is out of action but I will look after that  as well. By the way, I hear that the Danes came to Ireland recently to have a go at the Irish. However where the two armies met was not in Clontarf but at the other side of the river. What was the name of the man leading the Irish in Clontarf?  Answer:Brian.

Jackie Jackie 24 October 2017 09:05:07

Glad to hear there wasn’t too much damage Dick. We escaped the worst here too thankfully. It’s very mild for the time of year which is great. I hate Oct/Nov so it doesn’t feel as bad when it’s so mild out. 

fraoch fraoch 24 October 2017 13:10:57

Glad it wasn't too bad, Dick.

DeclanTipp DeclanTipp 25 October 2017 00:46:45

Let’s hope the Irish raid on Copenhagen next month is a winning one Dick !

TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 25 October 2017 01:21:37

Those fallen trees will take a bit of clearing up Dick - you are wise to take it a bit at a time - take care of yourself and don't be in too much of a hurry getting things done!

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 29 October 2017 09:31:38

You have all winter to tackle those trees, Dick.

Dick Dick 16 November 2017 15:59:41

Thank you all. My nephew Eoin called a few days ago. He had seen the light work I had done. He plans to bring along the chain saw and do a real job on the wood. What would you say is the name of his brother, just over a year older? Answer Brian.

Declan, perhaps if the two armies met in Parnell Park(near Clontarf) the Irish might have won as they did in 1014 when led by Brian's men. 

Country Market

20 October 2017 20:41:10

To day as usual, I went to Askea Country Market with my garden produce. In addition to the plants which were mainly propagated from parent plants, I had two bags of cooking apples 1 kg in each. In jig time they were gone. Last year I had great difficulty selling them probably due to the abundance of same. Last year I had 4 stone of these while this year due to weather conditions early in the year I had only 1 stone of same.

TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 20 October 2017 20:49:49

Sounds like a successfult trip to the market Dick!

fraoch fraoch 20 October 2017 21:06:05

Well done!

Scrubber Scrubber 20 October 2017 21:11:18

Can you be classed as a marketeer then dick. Well done on the apples! Hope the plants went to good homes as well.

Dick Dick 20 October 2017 22:13:22

Peter, in recent times, the people seem to want only something that they can eat. Things have changed. Less people are interested in gardening and one might expect the reverse. Thanks to all for your comments. I don't make money from this work. The people who do are those who have cakes, Apple tarts etc.

DeclanTipp DeclanTipp 20 October 2017 23:05:10

It's nice to get out and about Dick ! I had a woman call this evening looking for Honey which Iam out of (apart from home use ) . She then asked for Tomatoes to buy but I gave her a dozen free . The stock is nearly gone TG 

Jacinta D Jacinta D 21 October 2017 11:10:48

It's an awful pity that the people who make the tarts don't buy their apples from you, Dick.

Dick Dick 21 October 2017 20:14:18

Not this year Jacinta. I had a poor yield of Cookers. Thanks all the same.

Fleurette Fleurette 21 October 2017 23:40:45

Well done, Dick.  It is a great pastime to go to the Country market and I am sure you have you regular customers.  As far as buying is concerned, it is really good to be given the opportunity of acquiring fresh home-grown produce. Whever I am given a pot of homexmade Jam, I know I have the real McCoy!    


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