a mediateam website

See a sample issue of The Irish Garden!

Bernie B's Garden

View more photos

Check back soon to read all about Bernie B's Garden


Meet Alfie

21 October 2010 21:03:03

It has been ages since I have posted on the site. Haven't been doing a lot in the garden except for the basic clearing and tiding up. On the 30th of August  my lovely cocker spaniel Fred who was with me for fourteen years passed away and would you believe only two weeks later my little gardening mate Harry (my 6 year old black cocker spaniel) got run over. I have been heart broken and I am just getting over it now. I miss them dreadfully. 

Two weeks ago I got my new puppy Alfie and he is such a cutie. He has helped to fill a huge space in my heart. Unfortunately he is a digger and just loves digging up my plants. Hopefully he will grow out of it. He loves being outdoors and like Harry follows me everywhere and loves to help out in the garden!!


fran m fran m 21 October 2010 21:06:35

Hi Alfie.

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 21 October 2010 21:15:02

Good to have a dog about the garden. Unfortunately, our dog is no longer with us and we now have foxes all around the place, coming right up to the house and making me worry for the safety of our hens and ducks. 

I hope Alfie barks loudly and marks his territory regularly as he will have to rely on deception to keep foxes and other pests at bay - he just looks too soft to be a fighter.

Lovely dog, enjoy the company. 


lja lja 21 October 2010 21:22:16

A cute little thing. Lots of fun and games to be had by him.  Enjoy.



fraoch fraoch 21 October 2010 21:31:36

Hope he gets over the digging phase! Enjoy.

MartinB MartinB 21 October 2010 21:52:42

Sorry for your double loss, it must be terrible for you, Alfie is the only answer and i hope that he fills the gap in time .

Cloncaw Cloncaw 21 October 2010 22:21:13

Alfie looks like butter wouldn't melt in his mouth he's so sweet.

Grouse my Springer Spaniel died in June and Connie my other one seemed quite lonely without him but now we have adopted two german pointer cross pups but they've learnt quickly not to dig up the garden but nothing else is safe if left sitting about.

Jacinta D Jacinta D 03 November 2010 18:59:29

Oh Bernie, I would love to just run away with Alfie. He is gorgeous.

SOrry to hear about your 2 other dogs. It must have been heart-wrenching. But surely Alfie will keep you busy enough so you won't have your 2 other pals on your mind constantly.

Insect ID please

29 September 2010 13:00:56
Can anyone identify this strange insect that I spotted in my garden. He was quite large and has a long tapering "snout" which he was using to take the pollen from the flowers. I have never seen anything like it before. I have posted a clearer picture in my September 2010 album.
Jacinta D Jacinta D 29 September 2010 13:08:21

Better go and look at your album so. Nothing visible except verbena bonariensis in the above photo. And the most gorgeous dog.

Jacinta D Jacinta D 29 September 2010 13:09:27

Finding it difficult to make it out. SOrry Bernie.

Bernie B Bernie B 29 September 2010 13:19:14

Put a bigger one in now. Weird looking thing!!

Hosta Hosta 29 September 2010 13:37:18

I'm pretty sure that its a Hawk Moth.  Harmless just going about its business

JanetS JanetS 29 September 2010 14:23:28

It is a hawk moth. I was lucky enough to see one for the first time this year, on my jasmine!

Rachel Rachel 29 September 2010 17:18:11

Silly, that's a dog : )

Bernie B Bernie B 29 September 2010 17:46:31

I have just googled the Hummingbird Hawk Moth and thats what it is. It appears they are quite rare so I have been privileged to have seen one in my garden.

Cloncaw Cloncaw 29 September 2010 23:03:58

Could only see the dog until I looked in your September photos and then I saw it great photo.

Astrantia "Hadspens Blood"

16 September 2010 00:10:26

I went to Kilmurray Nurseries today to buy Astrantia "Hadspens Blood" which has been on my wish list for ages. Even though its only down the road from me I had never been to Kilmurray before...O wow I felt like a child in Toysrus on Christmas eve. Of course I came home with a lot more than intended, I bought Aconitum Nepellus "Monks Hood", Filipendula "Ventusa", Sedum Purple Emperor, Astrantia Margery Fish, Geranium Mavis Simpson, Kniphopia Bees Lemon, Pennistum Rubrum Spring as well as my precious Astrantia Hadspens Blood. So easy to get carried away...

I got home about 2 and got stuck in to planting my loot as well as a loads of spring bulbs. Unfortunatly spent most of the afternoon running in and out dodging the showers. I will hopefully get the rest of the bulb planting done tomorrow.

Maurisa Maurisa 16 September 2010 00:18:27

WOW! Bernie thats something else! another one on my wishlist now too :-)

Bernie B Bernie B 16 September 2010 00:22:35

Will have to wait until next summer for it to bloom though. But I'm planning ahead this year

Dick Dick 16 September 2010 00:30:56

Happy birthday to your daughter.

Cloncaw Cloncaw 16 September 2010 00:38:47

Great plants being added to your garden funny how we always end up with more than we intended.

Bernie B Bernie B 16 September 2010 00:47:39

Yeah it is so easy to get carried away. Just as well most things were not in bloom or I would have had to be dragged away.

Jacinta D Jacinta D 16 September 2010 08:11:35

Wow, Bernie. That Astrantia is a definite beauty. Must write that name down on my list.

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 16 September 2010 09:12:31

An excellent photograph!



MartinB MartinB 16 September 2010 13:06:49

Yes indeed

Rachel Rachel 16 September 2010 14:02:12

They have a 3 for €20 offer at Kilmurry, which works out well. I've been looking for Mavis Simpson. Must pay them a visit again.

Maurisa Maurisa 16 September 2010 14:03:53

Bernie pls wish ur daughter a very 'Happy Birthday'.

Lìga Lìga 16 September 2010 19:39:16

Great plants Bernie!!!Kniphopia 'Bees lemon' right now flowering in my garden,its beautiful,really.

Keego Keego 18 September 2010 23:52:03

Bernie - great selection of plants that you have got there and astrantia a great choice - i have four different varieties and they all do really well and have such a long flowering period - hardy as well - this one is really beautiful

On the move

08 September 2010 21:46:21
I cut down most of my spent gladoli today as they were well battered by the wind and heavy rain over the last few days. I want to dig them up and re plant them next year as I had planted them too close togeather but not sure when I should do this. Should I wait for the leaves to die down? If not how far down should I cut off the leaves and how do I stop them rotting.
Clara Clara 08 September 2010 21:51:46

They look lovely I had some a few years ago but they have dissapeared.

Jacinta D Jacinta D 08 September 2010 22:00:53

You could just dead-head them, leave the foliage, and replant where you want them for next year.

fraoch fraoch 08 September 2010 22:48:59

Great show!

TheH (Hazel) TheH (Hazel) 08 September 2010 23:18:08

I went out and staked my "battered" Gladioli today when the weather cleared and they immediatley perked up! They probably have a lot more to offer before you tear them up! Mine are planted a bit close also, but I just tied them in twos or threes to a stake to support them. If they are not in the wrong place I would leave them alone and see how many survive till next year! Years ago my mother did this with Gladioli and they flowered for years, although they gradually reverted to yellow.

Cloncaw Cloncaw 08 September 2010 23:53:57

Lovely colour still waiting for mine keep meaning to move them to a more sunny place must do so after this year.

End of my first gardening year

06 September 2010 16:54:42

Hi All. It's been a couple of months since I have posted a journal but have looked in most days to see how everyone is getting on. I have the day off today and because it is so wet outside I have been indoors catching up on the housework before I go back to work tomorrow. All the housework is done now so I have the feet up and I'm going to upload some photos of how my garden looked before the torrential rain. The garden is getting a right old soaking which was so needed and it will help to soften my clay soil so I can plant my spring bulbs.

The end of my first year of gardening is drawing to a close and I am delighted with how much I have achieved. I now have three very long herbaceous borders fully planted and plan to make another four over the next few months or so.  I have already started the seed planting in preparation. We have been eating the fruits of my labor over the last couple of months from our raised veg beds. I must admit I made quite a few mistakes, mostly planting everything too close together and unfortunately due to work commitments and not having the time to look after everything, a lot either went to seed or got eaten by pests. But I have learned so much and will try not to make the same mistakes next year.  I did have a bumper crop of tomatoes though and have made vast amounts of tomato chutney and tomato sauce. Thank you Krista for those "Charm" tomato seeds you sent me as most of the sauce was made from these wonderful big plum tomatoes.

Thanks to my wonderful partner Andrew I now have a brand new potting shed which he constructed over a few days at a fraction of the cost of a similar one which I had spotted in a popular Garden Centre. I will also upload a folder of other completed projects for this year. Our next project will be to plant a hedge around our greenhouse/veg area. We hope to have this done and ready for planting when bare root hedging comes into season. I cant make up my mind on what type of hedging to use so all ideas welcome. I would love box but am too impatient to wait for it to grow and also need something that grows quicker and higher (maybe 4 to 5 feet) because of our open windy site. Fran I love your grisilena hedge, don't be surprised if you wake up one morning and its disappeared :0)

LindaB LindaB 06 September 2010 18:00:35

Hi Bernie, that is a lovely sedum, very unusal.  I looked at all your photos you have done great work this year.  I love your potting shed.  I am very sorry to hear about your gorgeous dog, a big loss I am sure.

Bernie B Bernie B 06 September 2010 18:03:42

Thank you Linda. Fred was 14 years old and I miss him terribly.

Jacinta D Jacinta D 06 September 2010 18:09:59

Wow, Bernie. Just had a peep at your pics. You have a garden you can be proud of. So well laid out, maintained and utllized to the full. Congrats. Verrrry envious. Hopefully we will see more journals from you now that the bulk of it is done.

Cloncaw Cloncaw 06 September 2010 19:23:00

Beautiful plants and colour in your garden in such a short time and you and Andrew have completed a lot of projects that look great now you'll be able to enjoy.

fraoch fraoch 06 September 2010 20:07:49

You've done so much in just a year. Fantastic!

Keego Keego 06 September 2010 22:22:48

Lovely sedum - Looked at your pictures you and Andrew have done really well all looks great and I am really jealous of your potting shed. We have put in two different hedges since we moved in here a laurel hedge it is fast growing hardy and takes a battering from wind without much damage - we then put in Escallonia my personal favourite (after box) this took a battering last Winter and I was very nervous but it has pulled through it is also fast growing and has a nice red flower - good luck what ever you choose

greenway greenway 06 September 2010 23:54:06

lovely photos like the potting shed and bridge 

Rachel Rachel 08 September 2010 22:32:49

You have had a great year and done so much. Next year you will do even more. That is a lovely sedum.

For hedging, are you looking for formal or informal? All of the following are properly hardy.

Hypericum hidcote makes a lovely flowering, no trouble, almost-evergreen informal hedge. I would not recommend Rosa rugosa because of suckering.

For formal, Lonicera is very fast growing and evergreen. Beech is lovely too as long as you don't have wet soil and don't have a phobia about it holding onto its dead leaves over winter. My newest hedge is Oleaster and I am very pleased so far. It is evergreen and scented and seems to be growing quite fast.

Off to look at your photos now.

Bernie B Bernie B 08 September 2010 23:44:39

Yes Rachel I'm really hooked now :0). Have googled some of your hedge suggestions, I like the Lonicera. I think I will need about 100 plants so will need to scout around for prices.

Rachel Rachel 09 September 2010 07:53:24

Van der Wel in Aughrim are good for bare root.


Garden.ie Members

Not a member yet?
Join now to:

Join Now

Existing Members

Forgotten password

Garden.ie CLUB

Join Ireland's first online garden club! Share pictures of your garden, make new friends and chat with other gardeners. It's simple to join and free! Register Here

Featured Members


Thousands of gardening facts at your finger tips:

Ask Gerry

Gerry DalyTry our unique advice service from editor Gerry Daly. Got a question right now? Search here to see if it has been answered already:

a mediateam website

©2018 Garden.ie. Mediateam Ltd, Media House, South County Business Park, Leopardstown, Dublin 18.

Tel (+353 1) 2947777 Email info@garden.ie

Website Design by KCO.ie