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Gracedieu Lass's Journal

Gracedieu Lass's Journal

Last Post 3 days 8 hours ago

Aberglasney Gardens.

20 June 2017 14:28:11

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On our recent holiday to the Cotswolds we travelled by ferry from Rosslare to Fisguard and then travelled on through South Wales. We decided to break the journey with a visit to Aberglasney Gardens, a garden we had heard of many years ago at a talk given by a speaker who had been invited by the  Cork Alpine/Hardy Plant Society. He related the work that had taken place and the history of these wonderful gardens. 

The gardens are suitated in the Tywi Valley in Carmarthenshire, West Wales. It was featured in a BBC produced programme, 'A Garden Lost in Time' which followed the restoration of house and gardens. The property was on the brink of collapse when it was purchased in 1995 by The Aberglasney Trust and with the help of an Americian benefactor Frank Cabot the gardens were opened in 1991 and the house in 2013.

If you ever find yourself in this part of Wales I would urge you to pay the gardens a visit as you will not be disappointed. 

Happy Father's Day.

18 June 2017 21:30:24

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Best wishes to all the dads on the site. I am sure you all had a brilliant day and what a day it has been, weather wise. I must say I enjoyed all the presents that Paddy was lucky enough to get. The day came to a brilliant end with the flying over the garden by an air balloon a short while ago.

Everything is Coming Up Roses.

16 June 2017 22:50:15

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The weather today has been just fantastic, wall to wall sunshine and it is forecast to last for the next few days. This time last year we were very busy with arrangements for my son Patrick's wedding on 17th June and rushing to get the garden ready for the photos, however this year gardening has been much easier and more enjoyable with no pressure.

Today in the sunshine the flowers were just gorgeous and they too seemed to be enjoying the glorious weather. The scent from the roses was intoxicating as the heat of the mid-day sun seemed  to release it. Most of the roses I grow are David Austin Roses which are repeat flowering and all have an old fashioned fragrance. One of my favourite is Rosa 'Pilgrim' a soft yellow rose with a delicious lemon scent. They are so many that picking one is very hard. Last year I bought three rose bushes of Rosa 'Olivia Austin' a beautiful shell pink variety, but maybe the reason I bought it was because I have a very beautiful granddaughter, Olivia.

I suppose that is what makes a garden, plants that remind us of family and friends.

Iris germanica.

14 June 2017 08:28:46

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My latest craze is Iris germanic. About twenty years ago I had a nice collection of them, but then tired of them. However, the craze for them has reignited and have started to buy them again. I was dividing one yesterday and realised that I was putting a lot into the compost bin because I had so many, so I was wondering if any member would like to swap. The varieties I have for anyone wanting to swap are:

Iris germanica ' Dungarvan' ( not official name, but given to me by my father-in-law many years ago. He lived in Dungarvan, Co Waterford

Iris germanica  'Immortality' (white) 

Iris germanica 'Jane Phillips' (blue)

Iris germanica 'Superstition' (dark purple)

I visited Abbey House Garden in Malmesbury, Wiltshire recently and came across this beauty Iris 'Goodbye Heart'. One for the wish list.

This is the time for dividing Iris germanica and the cost of posting rhizomes would not be too expensive, so if anyone is interested please let me know.

Mid June Album

13 June 2017 21:51:50

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At long last the weather has improved and here are a few photographs of plants which have survived the atrocious weather we have had during June. Hopefully, this is the start of a dry period and our plants will recover the downpours and winds of the last few weeks. 

Hookhouse Pottery Garden, Tetbury Gloustershire.

13 June 2017 08:35:53

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Hookhouse Potter Garden is a private garden just outside the villager of Tetbury which opened under the National Garden Scheme. This group raises money for a number of charities in The UK and has been doing so for 90 years. It can only do so with the generosity of garden owners who invite people into their gardens for a day and sometimes a few days over the year. 

We were lucky enough to be able to visit this gorgeous cottage garden when on holidays a few weeks ago. It was most definitely a 'Cottage Garden' with a mix of trees, shrubs, flowers and vegetables. The garden was dominated by the very pretty Cotswold stone cottage and the wall of this cottage provided shelter and support for the many roses and climbers that adorned the walls.

Hope you enjoy the photos of this beautiful garden and many thanks to the owner for her welcome.

Cotswold Holiday.

11 June 2017 08:42:53

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At the end of May we took a gardening holiday to England visiting the Cotswolds. It is a region of very pretty villages and a huge number of gardens. Chipping Campden has to be one of the prettiest village of the lot, which is suitated near Hitcote, the famous garden of Lawrence Johnston. The main reason for our visit was to visit the garden of the Prince of Wales at Highgrove, which turned out to be the most disappointing of all the gardens we visited. We were there over the Whit weekend in England (last Monday in May) which coincided with a large number of private gardens open under the National Gardens Scheme, who are celebrating their ninety anniversary this year. 

I took lots of photos and have just edited a few of them, so far, but will upload some albums over the next few weeks. I think I will start with Barnsley House, the home of the renowned garden designer, Rosemary Verey, which has now been turned into a luxury hotel and is suitated in the gorgeous village of Barnsley. 

Looking through all my photos, I have just noticed that most are photos of walls, windows and roses, beautiful Cotswold stone walls, mullioned windows and climbing roses.

 

Dahlias.

06 June 2017 18:24:48

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Dahlias are flowering very early this year, maybe it is due to the mild Spring we had that they were growing very quickly once they were potted up. The plants that we put out a few weeks ago had good root systems and flower buds, but I am surprised that they are flowering already. Today, I picked a bunch to bring into the house so I could have a closer look at them. Hopefully the rainy windy weather that we are experiencing this week will not cause too much damage to them. Varieties of the dahlias are :

Dahlia 'Danseuse'(dusky pink)

Dahlia' Bloodstone' (red)

Dahlia 'Pooh' (yellow/orange)

Dahlia 'Mr. Optimist' (double red with yellow edge)

Dahlia 'Happy Face' (single red ) and

Dahlia 'Verrones Obsidian' (a honka type)

Would like to thank Peter W. for Dahlia 'Pooh' and Dahlia 'Mr. Optimist' he kindly gave me this Spring.

Charleville.

23 May 2017 23:21:41

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Today a few members of Garden.ie went on a visit to Charleville House, Enniskerry, Co Wicklow. We met in Powerscourt for lunch and had a very enjoyable lunch on the terrace in the glorious sunshine. We also had a surprise as Fran came and joined us for lunch and it was great to see him looking so well.

After lunch we travelled to Charleville Gardens in Enniskerry. These are garden on a grand scale, but still there were ideas which could be adapted to a domestic garden. The gardens are formal with trained fruit tree and wonderful hedges of Yew, Hornbeam, Box and an amazing pleached hedge of lime trees.  The planting inside the box hedges was informal and the growth was unreal, plants were jumping out of the soil. Hostas were enormous. The Orangery had a selection of tender scented plants which will flower over the summer months. The old brick walls were covered with roses, honeysuckle, climbing hydranges and jasmine. Seats were placed in nooks created by the hedges with beautiful views of the gardens.

A big thanks to Joan for the organising of the outing and it was very nice to meet up with members again. I hope we will have a return visit in August and maybe joined by some others, as it is a garden that you do not want to miss.

Woodville and Caher Bridge Gardens.

21 May 2017 12:32:38

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We spent a few days this week visiting The Burren in Co. Clare. It is always a delight to spend time in this wonderful place admiring the wild flowers and the unusual landscape. After this visit I am totally confused by orchids, just too much information. We saw lots of Heath Spotted Orchids on the shore near Fanore which were so tiny compared to the same orchid in the Comeraghs. We were also lucky to see The Fly Orchid near Gortlecka Cross which was growing with Twayblades and Pyramidal Bugle. It is a wonderful time to visit The Burren and we had nice weather apart from a few showers which did not stop us from walking up to the top of Mullaghmore. 

We also took time out to visit two gardens, Woodville Walled Gardens, near Gort in Co Galway and of course Carl Wright's amazing garden near Fanore. Woodville has a beautiful flower filled walled garden with the Alliums taking centre stage during May and contrasting so well with the yellow flowers of the Laburlum. 

Well Carl's garden, what can you say, a plant collection which has to be one of the best in the country. The next time I visit I will bring a notebook instead of a camera as the plants that he grows were unknown to me and only the best forms of plants that I did recognised. 

Will up-load an album later this evening of the two gardens.

Chelsea Flower Show.

21 May 2017 09:39:00
Chelsea Flower Show.

Chelsea Flower Show.

The first of the television programmes on the Chelsea Flower Show 2017 begins this evening on BBC at five. I have just read a review of the show and it seems that the number of Show Gardens have gone from a high of seventeen last year to only eight this year, which seems very little. Sponsorship seems to be lacking and maybe the Brexet effect is now having an effect on the gardening world. 

The review I read was by The Frustrated Gardener and well worth the read.

Whatever we read on Cheslea 2017, I am sure we will all be glued to the television over the coming week.

Allium Purple Sensation.

16 May 2017 17:40:12

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I read an article the other day written by Sarah Raven in which she recommended removing the dying leaves from alliums. I find they always look horrible at this time of year and was wondering if any of you grow a companion plant that covers the ground now that the leaves are gone. I am trying Artmisia  ludoviciana, but it seems to be slow to get going. Any suggestions welcome.

A Wet Start to the Week.

15 May 2017 11:57:13

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With the wind, rain and sun over the weekend our poor gardens are getting a thrashing from this May weather. We badly needed rain, but at this stage I think we have had enough. With trees in full leaf now, the weight of the rain on them is bending them to the ground and I hate to think what is happening to the herbaceous plants. I should have staked them sooner and I doubt if I am alone putting this job off. 

We had a busy weekend with a wedding, baby minding and visitors, but an enjoyable time nevertheless. I did not get to Mount Congreve for the Rare Plant Sale, but from some photos I have seen, it seems to have been a good day and the weather stayed dry,  if a little windy. 

A few photos of the garden from inside this morning with the rain and strong winds howling outside.

Dahlias Planted.

10 May 2017 13:25:13

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I went out to the garden early this morning with a mission and that was to plant out my dahlias. Watering, feeding and keeping them safe from cold weather for nearly three months, I was anxious to get them into the ground as soon as possible. They were good big plants with healthy roots, so should get going straight away. We planted thirty four plants in all which I hope will give a nice display over the summer/Autumn months.

A Cool Foggy Morning.

10 May 2017 07:08:41

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I woke very early this morning and was surprised to see the garden covered in fog. It seems to lift and suddenly there is a shaft of sunshine and in no time the fog is back again. The temperatures also have dropped and it is cold out there. Glad I covered my dahlias last night, but come hell or high water they are being planted out today. Maybe, that is why I am awake so early, anticipation to have them planted. Took a few photos this morning of the garden with the fog, but cannot upload an album until later when I can use a laptop, but here are three photos to capture a foggy morning in early May.

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