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DeclanTipp's Journal

DeclanTipp's Journal March 2017

Last Post 236 days 5 hours ago

A little bit done

28 March 2017 22:25:10

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Glad I got the early potatoes in as the rains came today. These always start off my veg garden each year . I sowed the French beans and Runner beans indoors as these are two heritage varitues I picked . The 2017 garlic is well up and last winters crop will be ready in a few months. Onions are also peeping so some mild weather now would be lovely. I managed to plant out some overwinteref Monarda plants today as the homegrown stuff was beginning to stockpile a little. Of course I then ended up slipping some Bay cuttings from the neighbours lawn when I was passing later on !! The Dahlia seeds are starting to sprout indoors so I will have more potting on to do shortly . 

The Paulownia Tormentosa is ready to leaf up too and has survived the winter chills . 

 

I did my first Bee Hive inspection during the warm weather and all looks good . Bees are already breeding and bringing in early pollen and nectar which is a sure sign of life . Got a call from the local bee society asking was I ready for my new colony which is coming this week . The society breeds starter colonies or nuclei for beginners which you may buy. Safety in numbers as it's unwise to keep just one in case of winter losses . 

Recycled Wellies

21 March 2017 17:20:36

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Had to treat myself to a new pair of wellies today as my old ones were leaking and threadbare after 5 good years . Took a notion to recycle them as planters for some Dahlia Tubers I had indoors 

I filled the soles with gravel for drainage and ballast . Hope they bloom this summer and  I can place them outside the front door . I might spray paint them yet !!

The south facing workshop window sill is now expectant with seeds ...

I don't believe it !

20 March 2017 17:22:55
I don't believe it !

I don't believe it !

The threat of summary dismissal or worse must have worked . Today one of my potted Camellias honoured me with a FLOWER .

Thank you William Bartlett for your presence . Thanks too to the .iers who persuaded me to persevere !!!!  

Frames and foundation assembly

19 March 2017 21:20:14

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No gardening today but a little preparation for the summer nevertheless. 

I intend starting a second hive so it was time to put together some brood frames and wax foundation . A brood box ( where the Queen lives and lays eggs) contains ten of these frames which give the bees a start . They can make their own wax but it takes 8 ounces of pollen to make one ounce of wax. These frames and s sheet of wax foundation allow them to establish quickly and hopefully thrive . 

Some keepers allow the queen a brood box and a smaller second box on top for her duties as it provides more working Bees in a year . Iam not sure which route I will take yet . Possibly I will try a hive using both . 

 

 

Gardening Bee Association

17 March 2017 22:02:57
Gardening Bee Association

Gardening Bee Association

Well it appears that many of my new Bee keeping friends are also avid gardeners and surplus plants and flowers are often brought to meetings and given away to members !! There's a lady bringing in Rudbekia divisions to next Tuesdays meeting. Of course all are Bee friendly plants and sources of pollen and nectar . Bees gather water and propolis also on their travels . Propolis being the sticky stuff from Tree buds they use as glue and sealant in the hives . 

All go today

15 March 2017 18:48:35

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I was expecting my second delivery of stone this morning and had started the spreading when the plumber decided to call also to install some new sets of taps in the house . You know the job that you have kept putting off for years . Old plumbing and I wasn't going near it !! . Hes a patient sort and eventuay got it done ... 

The stone spreading is nearing conclusion , 18 tonnes so far which is due to the space involved . Anyhow it does tidy up the hidden side of the dwelling .

Spotted these two hellebores looking well in the sunshine 

More Stone

14 March 2017 19:23:21
Me and Slievenamon.

Me and Slievenamon.

Another 8 Tonne of washed stone arriving in the morning . Hopefully this will complete the area . Iam going to cut the bags as the lift puts them into place. It's damm hard work getting the bags emptied by hand ! You live and learn. The driver is a local chap and very obliging too . 

Lawns cut , 6 seed trays sowed , onions and garlic beds tidied up and mulched . Ground also ready for the early potatoes . I bought three containers of chicken manure pellets in Aldi and it seems decent enough.

the photo I took while walking the dogs, Slievenamon in the background . It's not my usual facial expression .. ha ha 

Phew

12 March 2017 00:01:00

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Just back from thurles after watching Tipp and Kilkenny play another thriller . Tipp were a little complacent I thought but what a game . I watched Monty Don after recording it so full of ideas for tomorrow . Looks like some nice weather on the way . I need to cut lawns Monday ! Bees busy today with different colors of pollen being brought to hive . Wonder where they are foraging ?.. ivy pollen is normally the first flow but crocus  flowers are good too . Some tulips showing well but I don't see any Bees visiting these . I got the ten Tonne spread but will need more to finish job . This is a side entrance which is seldom used or seen but i have plans for the shady parts now after GW tonight . Night all and happy gardening . 

Ten Tonne, Lupin & Pollen

09 March 2017 20:57:17

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My day began with a delivery , 10 Tonne of bagged and washed stone . I would pick the warmest day of the year ! Six Tonne now spread and Hopefully I'll manage the remainder tomorrow . She who must be obeyed was suitably impressed and wants some more " to finish the job " finish me more like . I took a coffee break beside the Bees who were busy collecting the spring ivy flow . Or it could be crocus and daffodil . Looks good anyhow . Noticed a lovely pond of water sitting in a small lupin on the way back to my shovel and take 

Tubers

07 March 2017 16:30:44

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I decided to simply split one tuber ball in half and replant the two halves. The other Tuber ball I cut apart tediously so it will be interesting to see how many regrow . These are going into a plot in the veg garden ( go forth and multiply ) where they can take their chances 

Dahlia Advice on dividing

04 March 2017 15:28:57

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I had two containers in dry storage over winter and decided today to replace the compost before putting outdoors again . When I saw the ball of tubers I got a bit of a shock ! better divide I thought and was about to simply split into half when I thought better of it . A 3 minute YouTube video showed a gentleman doing it tuber by tuber and painstakingly too. A tuber growing from another tuber apparently is useless and should be discarded . 

Most of these appear to be growing from a stem however . Anyhow I decided to wash and allow dry before taking the blade to them and hopefully some advice from my friends . To think I actually bought Dahlias a few days ago ....

What's changed ?

02 March 2017 17:50:41

Dicks Rhubarb

01 March 2017 16:47:34

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Iam now the proud owner of early Rhubarb thanks to Dick. Saw the early variety on sale today in Woodies so it's now planted next to the later crop . Of course there were other purchases too mostly Dahlia tubers as I have a weakness for these I believe ! Planted 3 containers including some I had in storage . I opened my seed box and got a shock when I saw the number of packets now for sowing ! This not including the vegetable seed ..... gotta get busy or even busier 

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