Last Post 1121 days 9 hours ago
26 April 2010 00:43:36
With the pressures of work little or no time for the garden,Potted on tomatoes, chilli peppers and sweet peppers all seedlings have been evicted from the house to the tunnel. Planted some of the sweetpea into the bed on the NW of the house to climb up trellis should be scented so good near the back door. Sowed a few different seeds broadcast in beds to hopefully provide a bit more colour. Tulips are opening on a daily basis and putting on a good show and on the whole plants are looking good. Need to spend sometime in the kitchen garden to sow or plant out some more veg and must try to organise more into the polytunnel oh to have more time. Was busy working including today but Johnny and Ali have been levelling and raking either side of the new drive along with David who is now on leave after 6 months in Kosovo so it's starting to look good hopefully grass seed will be sowed tomorrow and everything will be helped along by the welcome rain. We were really lucky no rain all day really but at 6:30 it was torrential but the air is so fresh now, rain last night made no impression on the hard ground at all. Have posted up some more photos of our garden in April, photo of Clematis Alpina which is one of 2 I bought for £10 stg such delicate little bell like flowers. With any luck will get to a garden centre tomorrow to find some replacement shrubs some veg plants and a few more flowers hopefully and then plant in the nice warm and watered earth. One thing that is proving more and more difficult is reading journals and adding comments especially as I'm very slow on putting up comments and journals but it's interesting seeing all the work going on.
18 April 2010 20:52:08
Glaslough in the Setting Sun.
The setting sun turned the houses and the village red so had to share this view.
18 April 2010 20:48:11
Sky on Fire
Just looked out the window to the west and all of a sudden the sky looked on fire with horses silohetted against the sky so it was out with the camera again.
18 April 2010 20:22:50
The whole cover is fixed in place, the hardest part was trying to pleat the ends in neatly don't know if it was harder because the tunnel is quite tall on the sides but I wanted to have a much space as possible as it is only around 9' X18'. Don't think we'll be changing careers yet but guess if we had to do it again the 2nd time round would be easier. There is still a bit if work to be done as there is a window to go in for ventilation, amazing the heat in there in a very short time. To finish off the work Johnny and Ali brought up a stoage cupboard and slotted it in the corner above the tunnel so now I will also have storage for pots and tools etc. Have to go to Portlaoise for a meeting tomorrow but hopefully it'll be finished tomorrow evening and then I can move things in. Have put up some more photos in the polytunnel album.
18 April 2010 20:10:30
Cover up and over 18/04
This afternoon with a bit of help the cover was opened and put in place. The whole experience has been a steep learning curve for us. Started just before 3pm and they finished up around 6:30pm.
16 April 2010 21:33:36
View from Drumbannagher Hill
All focus is on planting up the trees while the weather is favourable. Helped plant up birch in a little copse to the NW of the new driveway after lunch and this evening helped plant the green beech and chestnut trees, Johnny and Ali had planted all the mountain ash last night and are still out working at the trees. Tomorrow will be a tidy up job as Paul is coming to drive his digger think there is a lot of raking to be done. Opposite our house is Drumbannagher Fort and the farm has been busy putting in a roadway to access the back of his land so we drove up as the view across the area is fantastic, photo is looking down to Cloncaw House. Don't think I'll have much garden time tomorrow but hopefully Sunday although think I hrard forecast give some rain and much cooler.
15 April 2010 23:17:32
Trees arrive for planting 15/04
This morning collected the trees and added 4 rootball green beech to what I had already picked. Some are now planted with Johnny and Ali working on in the dark watering them in and the chestnuts in pots all were watered as well but need to be soaked before planting tomorrow, beech also have to be planted as well so hopefully tomorrow they'll all be in, will probably need some more to finish it off. Then there will be a lot of raking to be done on Saturday and grass seed sown but it should all be worth it in the end. This afternoon removed the last dead pittsporum from the grass but it won't be replaced. Planted in remainder of the dahalias, sowed some Larkspur, China Asters, and Nigella seeds in gaps, seeds sowed last week are already germinating in the terrace bed and there are quite a few selfseeded poppies popping up along this bed as well. Need to go shopping for a few shrubs and then work on the south bed below the terrace as it needs more colour and plants to fill gaps, think that 2 cistis need to be removed as they really seem to have expired. Noticed that the clematis in the corner of the terrace has a lot of buds formed so I'm looking forward to the display.
Had a look in the kitchen garden and potatoes peeping up along with onions, shallots, carrots, turnips are starting to show. The raspberries seem to have settled in need to try and spend a bit of time to sow beans, peas etc and I'm still hoping that the tunnel cover will be put in place but think that the trees have to take priority as the cover won't expire sitting but the trees will and there's just too much money to lose.
14 April 2010 23:54:42
Pure delight is how I feel looking through the window across the terrace to the east and the pond as the Purissima tulips glow softly in the sun will definitely plant more for next year.
What another good gardening day although it started cool out came the sun, it was cool out in the open due to the breeze but a great day for working. First job this morning was to buy some quicks for the hedge off the lane and then on to collect the cover for the polytunnel in Armagh it's now sitting waiting for sufficent help to get it in place. Lifted the small greenhouse shelving out of the kitchen onto the step to harden off seedlings no breeze here and sun was providing enough heat without baking them, I have done this for the last few days leaving the door open.Johnny spent a while leveling and harrowing the area to be planted with trees either side of the new driveway. Paul arrived this evening and dug the holes for the trees with the mini digger tomorrow we will go and collect them plan to get them planted tomorrow. Between lessons I removed another pittsporum from the NW bed and another evergreen shrub that were on death row have one more pittsporum to execute from grass but think I will need manpower to finish the job. Will have to make a visit to Mahon garden centre I think to buy some replacements am going to replace the evergreen either with climbing rose ofr honeysuckle as they could be trained along the trellis towards the back door but not sure on others but definitely not pittsporum as 5 have now ended up dead.
13 April 2010 23:48:38
Men at Work
Another beautiful day although it was a bit dull this morning but brightened up around lunchtime. Caroline cut the grass it must have been October last when it last saw a lawn mower. There is a bit of work to fill in divets caused by the horses galloping around it it certainly is no bowling green but certainly looks a lot better now. I spent a few hours planting out more from the plants in waiting, need to get a few shrubs to replace those that went to death row the cistis on the corner of the east gable bed joined the dead today. Johnny spent the day drawing topsoil to level either side of the driveway before we plant the trees. We hired a man and a mini digger to load and then level the soil, he also dug a trench for hedging either side of the entrance off the lane to the farm and equestrian centre hopefully this hedging will be in place tomorrow. Hope this weather continues for a while longer to keep on a roll with landscaping and tree planting.
13 April 2010 10:25:27
Raspberries and Cream
Planted lots of tulips in pots and then planted out a few weeks back after the weather improved. The creamy white are Purissima and I think the raspberry ones are Queen of Marvel although they are not as tall as details on the packet. I have found a lot of bulbs have a stunted growth must have been the cold, little white drumstick primula is inching up each day. There are lots more tulips on the verge of opening with the daffodils now out and tulips bursting open spring is definitely here.
Will add some more photos later this evening off to the garden for a while now.
13 April 2010 10:16:01
Look at Me
This was the same tulip one hour later once the heat had reached it, it's in the bed on the NW of the house by the back door so gets no real sun it closed up again. Just fascinating watching their comings and goings depending on conditions.
13 April 2010 10:10:35
Took this photo at 10:00 yesterday of a tulip peeping up through an evergreen shrub name escapes me. Could hardly believe what it looked like about an hour later.
12 April 2010 11:19:37
Yesterday while working in the garden I noticed that these little fiery fellows were on the verge of opening, then this morning with their faces turned up wards saying look at me was a real delight as they are in the bed along the NE of the house. The redish pink of the hellebores makes this a lovely combination to brighten up this bed with skimmia, eleganus providing a backdrop for them. It's such a joy to see flowers popping up and unfurling their buds in this beautiful weather. Only managed to get 3 hours yesterday, few things to do then it's out for another stint of gardening. Polytunnel cover ordered should be able to collect from JF Mckenna Armagh on Wednesday so with luck the polytunnel will be up and running by the weekend.
10 April 2010 22:34:50
Starting to rise in the sunshine
On Easter Sunday I planted out Drumstick primula that were very stunted by the cold. There was no stick at all but slowly but surely the white head is rising from it's new location in the terrace bed, not sure if the others will develop flowers or not. Lots of buds appearing including allium , hyacinths and tulips and the dicentra is going to put on a real show as mass of buds are nearly open.
This afternoon I went to a nursery at Doohamlet, we bought a lot of trees from whips upwards there 2 years ago and need more trees for either side of the driveway which has to be finished before the June wedding. On Tuesday have to collect horse chestnuts, mountain ash, small birch and will see if Johnny agrees to a couple of large beech trees which are at a very reasonable cost. I also picked up some dogwood to plant near the pond which I brought home in the can but the others need to go into the horse trailer I think. Monday I'll try to buy cover for the polytunnel and with any luck maybe I'll get an hour or two in the garden tomorrow late afternoon once I'm finished work.
10 April 2010 22:16:53
Ready for the cover nearly
Most of the construction work has been done with stays and supports in place and the door hung, just need a window to be made in the other end for ventilation. Will try a supplier in Armagh for the cover think that Paul - Milkchurns got one there otherwise will try a firm in Omagh. Ali is returning on Monday evening so a bit more will be done so hopefully shortly it'll be all systems go. From what Johnny has told someone it's a case of getting all these seeds etc out of the house so the tunnel became a good idea.
10 April 2010 22:04:30
Redoing the hoops
James has departed back to Dublin think it was the big escape as he reckons it's all manual labour at home. Ali was organised to come and do the carpentry work on the tunnel and before 10 am he arrived and the first question was how did we think of building one this way so thanks Hoey for sharing details on yours. James had sort of decided it was not really going to be high enough for him to work in so just to make sure he can continue in the labour camp it was raised slightly as some of the hoops had to be changed. By early afternoon Johnny and Ali were ready to construct the timber ends in preparation for the recycled door and cover.
08 April 2010 22:29:34
Hoops in place
Another day was spent by Johnny and James working on the polytunnel, the base has been stoned and the hoops are now in place so it is taking shape. There is a possibility that these hoops will be replaced with a slightly heavier one that we have on a reel. Saturday will hopefully see the timber frame for the doors and supporting the hoops be constructed by Ali and Johnny and if I can source the cover it'll be finished looking forward to having my little tunnel 9' X 18'.
07 April 2010 19:27:17
It's a start - James and Connie discuss the Progress
Well eventually all the talk about making a polytunnel has bourne fruit and last week an area in the lee of the hedge was cleared and some preparation done. I have been busy teaching Pony Club camp but this afternoon I could here hammering and lo and behold there was a frame being put in place to raise the area and some materials had been bought. Johnny and James were busy at work so it is a case of watch the space and see what happens.
Planted potatoes into bags and these are now in the kitchen garden by the hedge, onions beginning to peep up think I can just see carrots appearing and the milan top turnips have germinated, raspberry plants and gooseberries look as though they are settling into their new home well. Won't have any time probably till Saturday afternoon for the garden but work is a necessary evil unfortunately.Will put up some photos of the flowers in April later with any luck.
05 April 2010 19:06:30
Today's plans fell by the wayside due to the gale force winds ripping around the extent of todays gardening was to buy some rockery plants from Lidl to fill in some of the gaps between the boulders in the bed along the south of the terrace.
Saturday replanted the raspberry bushes and gooseberry bushes that Johnny and James lifted when they removed the temporary raised bed along the hedge. They stoned the area around the washing line retaining the ground with timber poles and large stones. The area of the bed has been stoned and all the compost removed to the farmyard think I may just get a small poly tunnel built by the talk. I'm keeping my fingers crossed this project continues it's close to the house not in full view and in the lee of the hedge.
Sunday after lunch planted in clematis Cardinal Rouge and Clematis Alpina at the arch just hope the gale force winds don't batter them to death. In the terrace bed planted in the oriental poppies, alliums that I had potted up and sowed some larkspur, asters, love in a mist and phacelia to fill the gaps when the tulips die back. There are lots of plants starting to shoot although there are a number of plants that I'm not so hopeful about. In the east bed I planted up hollyhocks, achellia, rudbeckia, chinese lanterns and a block of echinops. Had planned to continue this planting today but I would have been blown away.Will not have anytime until Friday afternoon at the earliest as I have to teach at Monaghan Pony Club camp for the next 3 days just hope the weather calms down think it'll take rain for that to happen but by all accounts weather is to improve mid week so fingers crossed this is just a blip.
05 April 2010 12:52:20
What on earth am I ?
I have no idea what this is. Any idea what it is?
05 April 2010 12:06:40
Frog Spawn galore
On a wander round the garden on Thursday 1st I ended up by the pond lifting plant pots that had flown on the wind and settled near the pond. There was a massive area of frog spawn in this area, taking the area of our pond covers there will be millions of the little fellows by the looks of it.
05 April 2010 12:01:59
On the hunt for dinner
After the fantastic weather up to the 28th the rains returned and with it the flooding and raised water table. On Wednesday the weather had improved and late afternoon there was a flock of blackbirds on the forage for dinner. I'm assuming the worms had come to the surface out of the water bad luck for them.