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Gracedieu Lass's Journal

Gracedieu Lass's Journal May 2011

Last Post 2378 days 15 hours ago

May album 2011

21 May 2011 22:09:38
May album 2011

May album 2011

With such miserable weather this evening I decided to have a look at some photos Paddy had taken of the garden during this month and despite the cooler conditions many plants are flowering and lasting longer, but lets hope the wind this evening will not put an end to them. Off to London in the morning to attend the Chelsea Flower Show on Tuesday let's hope the weather is better in England for our trip. Mary

Lining its nest

19 May 2011 13:23:15
Blackbird collecting nest material

Blackbird collecting nest material

This blackbird, it strikes me, is a little late in the year to be collecting material for nest-building but this shot was taken this morning.

Paddy 

Codonopsis clematidea

18 May 2011 22:15:20
Codonopsis clematidea

Codonopsis clematidea

Photograph of the full flower. Paddy

Caught in the evening light

18 May 2011 21:44:53
Codonopsis clematidea in the evening light

Codonopsis clematidea in the evening light

When I had finished cutting the grass this evening, lawnmower put away in the shed and walking back to the house, this caught my eye. The flower was in a shady area but caught by the evening light and I thought it looked very nice. It is a flower of Codonopsis clematidea which has interesting markings on the inner part of the flower and a peculiar scent from the foliage when brushed.

Paddy 

Outstanding book about to be published

17 May 2011 18:50:39
Outstanding book about to be published

Outstanding book about to be published

Seamus O Brien's forthcoming book is one I have been looking forward to for many years. It will, I believe, be regarded as one of the most significant contributions to Irish horticultural literature. 

Every success to Seamus. 
 
Post Scriptum: The link below is to the publisher's page and gives further information. In case it is not working, here is the gist of the material. Paddy
 
 
  • A must for botany enthusiasts and professionals alike


  • Traces botanical discoveries in China from the late 1800s to the late 1990s in both a specialist and wider cultural context

Augustine Henry is one of the most famous of the pioneering plant hunters to have travelled to China during the latter part of the 19th century, playing a key role in establishing the basis for our present knowledge of the Chinese flora. His account of the destruction of great tracts of China's forests prompted later plant hunters like E. H. Wilson, George Forrest, Frank Kingdon Ward and William Purdom to venture to China in the name of plant exploration and introduction.In the Footsteps of Augustine Henry tells the fascinating story of his life and work and documents the expeditions undertaken by a dedicated team of botanists and horticulturalists in the 1990s to revisit Henry's routes, many of which were in danger of being flooded with the installation of the Three Gorges Dam across the Yangtze River.
 
 
Seamus O'Brien is a plantsman, plant hunter, author and lecturer. He is Ireland's leading authority on plants from the temperate regions of China and his travels in pursuit of plants have taken him across Nepal, China, California, Chile, New Zealand, Australia and Tasmania, effectively 'in the footsteps' of Augustine Henry on a number of expeditions. He is a regular contributor to Irish Garden among other publications and currently manages Kilmacurragh Botanic Gardens, an 18th century country estate belonging to the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin in Dublin. He has won several awards in recognition of his expertise including the 1996 Christopher Brickell award and two awards granted by the RHS Bursary Committee. Many of his most recent introductions can be found in Western gardens.


http://www.antique-acc.com/accltd/servlet/oase.article.showArticle?art_event=GET_ART&ident=Art&wfw=1305653978753&art_vnr=1870673735

An aquilegia without the spurs

06 May 2011 19:22:07
Semiaquilegia ecalcarata

Semiaquilegia ecalcarata

Semiaquilegia ecalcarata is very like an aquilegia but does not have the spurs at the back of the flower. It is a very dainty flower, very elegant, simple and pretty and generally smaller than the aquilegia cultivars generally grown. 

Here is a description from Chiltern Seeds Catalogue, to save me writing the description:  This is an utterly charming plant from China with delicate, slightly downy, divided, grey-green leaves and bearing in summer slender stems of exquisite, nodding, bell-shaped flowers, like spurless Columbines, of a lovely dusky mauve-purple colour (although one author described his plants as having flowers of a "burnt-sienna brown"). This is a beautiful plant for a sunny or semi-shady position in the rockery. 6-12 ins.

Paddy

 

Like a Grace Kelly hat!

06 May 2011 15:33:51
Grace Kelly's Hat

Grace Kelly's Hat

She says it every year and it still baffleds me though she has explained it to me many times. 

Each year when these irises flower in the pond this is Mary's comment, "Don't they look just like a Grace Kelly hat?"

Well, they could very well but I don't know a lot about Grace Kelly's hats and couldn't say.

 

Paddy 

Japanese Gardens, Tully, Co. Kildare

04 May 2011 19:28:18
Japanese Gardens

Japanese Gardens

Mary and I visited the Japanese Gardens in Tully, Co. Kildare on Monday afternoon last. Our reactions to the garden were mixed. Mary enjoyed the Japanese Gardens while I found them claustrophobic, cluttered and badly maintained. However, there were some very fine specimens of Japanese maples which were very beautiful. 

The gardens are attached to the National Stud with the St. Fiachre Gardens nearby and I have included a few photographs of this also.

Paddy 

 

Fota Island, April 2011

04 May 2011 09:30:31
Cornus Contraversa Variegata at the lake in Fota Island

Cornus Contraversa Variegata at the lake in Fota Island

Dick mentioned in a journal he posted yesterday that he had never visited Fota Island gardens so I am putting up an album from a visit last Thursday to give a flavour of the place. It is certainly well worth a visit. The parkland, in particular, is very good with an excellent selection of trees - an especially good Cork Oak, which I didn't photograph on this occasion. 

They are obviously enjoying a  big increase in visitor numbers there judging by the amount of space given over to car-parking. The Wildlife Park seems to be the bigger attraction, judging from the number of cars in that carpark, but there was a good number also at the house and gardens.

The house is now open to the public with guided tours. There is also a small cafe with seating both indoors and out though I wouldn't recommend it as it didn't seem to be kept clean either in the kitchen area or in the outdoor eating area. Many people bring picnics and there is plenty of space to enjoy a picnic.

There are two walled gardens open to the public, one contains a sunken Italianate garden which is well designed though sparsely planted. The second walled garden is the Rose Garden which also has borders of herbaceous material by the walls. It never sets my heart alight. The walls of both walled gardens are planted with an interesting selection of plants, many considered tender, which do well in this setting. There is a particularly spectatular wisteria surely running along more than 50 metres of wall in one of the gardens. The same garden has a gorgeous Magnolia grandiflora which I always love to see. 

The new gardens which we see on the television are in another walled garden not normally open to the public but is opened now, on occasion, so people can view the gardens.

The general parkland is excellent with a very interesting collection of trees and wonderful quiet walkways. The lake is also very attractive, with the planting affording very pretty views, reflections of the trees etc. There is a good selection of rhododendrons, azaleas and magnolias.  

Overall, it is a very pleasant garden, lots of interesting trees - a particularly good selection of magnolias, thought they are now out of flower.

Paddy 

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