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Gracedieu Lass's Journal

Gracedieu Lass's Journal May 2016

Last Post 537 days 23 hours ago

The Lane in May.

31 May 2016 19:48:03

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The weather over the last two weeks has just been glorious and the trees in The Lane are now shading most of the grass path. The large horsechestnut is in full flower and looking very well. The deciduous azaleas are all flowering and the scent in the evenings is just intoxicating. These are the last of the shrubs that will flower here and for the summer months, geraniums, primulas and the blue poppies will continue the show.

We have been busy for the last week or so with a visit to The Burren on Thursday and Friday and this week with wedding plans which is only a little over two weeks away.

Fairbrook Garden Part 4.

25 May 2016 13:21:58

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A few photos of the hedges in the garden.

Fairbrook Gardens Part 3.

25 May 2016 13:15:49

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Some of the old walls from the mill which are still standing.

Fairbrook Garden Part 2.

25 May 2016 13:07:37

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Battery ran out so only uploading them now.

Fairbrook Gardens, Kilmeaden, Co,Waterford.

25 May 2016 10:30:22

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On Thursday evening last our local garden club visited the gardens of Clary Mastenbroek and her late husband Dutch artist Wout Muller. The garden was original the site of a flax mill and the walls that survived the years have been left standing to create the enclosed garden that exists today. There is a stream running through the garden with a beautiful arched bridge crossing it. The garden is divided into many different areas like a fernery, a wisteria walk, a lavender field surrounded by roses and a lily pond. In the former dye house, a pool has been laid out with water filtered by beds of reeds. Throughout the garden there are sculptures strategically placed. Hedging is used to divide the garden and also cut into different shapes which adds so much to the overall effect of the garden. A very different garden with a European feel.

I will have to upload the photos over a number of journals due to using an iPad.

Alpine Trough.

22 May 2016 18:16:00

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I have always loved alpine plants and have a number of troughs which are planted with small bulbs and alpine plants. They can give you a huge amount of pleasure, even on a wet day in winter,  when a tiny little bulb comes into flower. Alpine plants always look best during spring but continue through the summer and even into the autumn. They take up so little space that a tiny garden can accommodate a trough or two. This one Paddy made about ten years ago from cement and over the years it has weathered well.    It faces north so the plants growing in it are ones that like shade.

Amaryllis.

22 May 2016 17:59:52
Amaryllis.

Amaryllis.

A little out of season, but what a beautiful flower. 

Dahlias.

22 May 2016 17:56:36
Dahlias.

Dahlias.

Another lovely day today, so I decided to get the dahlias planted. They have been outside for the last few weeks and have continued to grow despite the windy rainy weather. They were well rooted and should do well now that they have their freedom. Their biggest problem now is to avoid being eaten by slugs and snails. In all I planted twelve dahlias, three plants of each variety, so should give a good display. I also planted some cannas as well which were getting too big to be held in the glasshouse. I will leave the cannas out over the winter with a mulch to protect them and hope we don't have any harsh frosts.

That Time of Year Again.

20 May 2016 14:01:33
That Time of Year Again.

That Time of Year Again.

It is time again for the Chelsea Flower Show and coverage is starting on BBC on Sunday evening. I am sure by the end of next week we will be all 'chelseaed' out. 

Araucaria araucana.

20 May 2016 13:55:03

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Araucaria araucana, also know as the Monkey Puzzel tree is growing in a garden that we  visited with our local garden club last evening. The tree seems to have what looks like a sucker growing which is now a reasonable sized tree. I have never noticed this before on any of the trees that I have seen growing here in Ireland and was wondering if it is unusual or common. They are a familiar sight all over the country and seem to be planted in the front gardens of every farmhouse that was built in the mid to late eighteen hundreds.

Two Blue Pots.

20 May 2016 13:42:02

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The tale of the two blue pots continues with the flowering of  Tuliipa 'Carnival de Nice' which were a bit floppy after the wind and rain of the past week. I think a lily flowered tulip would have been better for growing in a pot, as it would have held itself more upright. Now mid May and these two pots have been of interest since the crocus flowered in Feburary, so good value for a few euros.

Blarney Castle Part Three.

17 May 2016 08:40:55

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The last three.

Blarney Castle Part Two.

17 May 2016 08:37:04

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Due to the fact that the site is not compatible with iPad I am uploading photos over a number of journals.

Blarney Castle.

17 May 2016 08:29:30

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A few photos from Blarney Castle where we visited last weekend.

Recommendation.

17 May 2016 08:24:24
Recommendation.

Recommendation.

I was wondering if any member grows a good Rheum which holds the red on the back of the leaf, has a large flower spike and keeps looking good throughout the summer months. The most common one for sale seem to be Rheum 'Ace of Spades'. I have had some over the years which were named varieties but were I think grown from seed of the variety, so maybe a good nursery that supplies good plants might be the best place to start. The Rheum in the photo is growing in the walled garden at Altamont Gardens, but there was none for sale in the garden centre. If anyone knows of a good variety from  a good nursery please let me know. Thanks.

The Cork Weekend.

16 May 2016 08:48:46
Hillside Garden.

Hillside Garden.

We had a great weekend in Cork and both the weather and the gardens were just beautiful. Many thanks to Margaret (Hosta), Ted K and Bruno for arranging all the activities over the weekend and everything went without a hitch. We really enjoyed the weekend and thanks again.

Three Rhododendrons

15 May 2016 23:48:48

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Three rhododendrons looking good in the garden at present which were planted nearly thirty years and have reached a nice size now.

Altamount Gardens, The Lake.

12 May 2016 11:17:38

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The lake in Altamont Gardens was dug out during the famine times. The area around it was planted by Mrs Corona North during her fifty years as owner of the gardens. These plants have now reached maturity and can be enjoy by the visitors. Reflection in the lake is obscured now by the vigorous growth of the water lilies during the summer months.

Altamont Gardens, The Herbacous Borders.

12 May 2016 11:07:24

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The Herbacous borders starting to show colour. The right hand border is mainly blue flowers while the border on the right is planted with dark and deep reds and oranges which carry flowers well into autumn.

Altamont Gardens, May 2016.

12 May 2016 10:58:27

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On our way home fron Wicklow on Sunday we called into Altamont Gardens in Co Carlow. The gardens are looking great and not a snowdrop in sight. The herbacous borders are starting to come into their own now and will only get better as we reach mid-summer. It was a lovely sunny day and it was wonderful to see so many people visiting and enjoying the gardens. 

As I use a iPad, I will put up three journals with photos attached.

The Rare Plant Fain in Russborough.

12 May 2016 09:15:47

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Last Sunday we went to the Plant Fain in Russborough House near Blessington in Co Wicklow. There was a good number of nurseries in attendance and it seemed plenty of customers. 

The Royal Horticultural Society of Ireland have a lease on the walled garden there and had it open to visitors for the day. The volunteers who work in the garden have done a huge amount to clear and plant a large section of this very large garden over the last five years and it is a credit to them. 

Tulipa 'Carnival de Nice'.

12 May 2016 08:42:16

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After all the rain of the last three days, these two pot of tulips have stood up to all that was thrown at them. I have used the same tulip in my layered pots, but they are not fully open yet. I doubt if these are perennial and will throw them out when they finished flowering. I bought them in Lidl, so we're not expensive.

Melanoselinum decipiens.

10 May 2016 20:12:23

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I love this plant, a real in your face plant and most of our gardens could do with a few of them. It has grown from a small plant in a three inch pot two years ago into this monster plant. As far as I know it will set lots of seed and I am looking forward to seeing what the seed heads will look like as they ripen. It was kindly given to me by Elizabeth from Cobh. 

We are attending the AGM of the Irish Garden Plant Society next weekend in Cork and this also involves visiting gardens. As it has been a long time since I have been to any Cork gardens I have been looking back at some photos from previous visits and the think that strikes me about all the gardens in Cork is that they are full to the gills with plants and the plants are so lush and exuberant. I suppose in some cases, it is age that has these magnificent gardens looking so good and also the generous planting which has been done by the gardeners. So after spending a wet afternoon looking back on old photos, I am looking forward to the weekend and promising myself to plant larger plants and many more. Just need to find the money to do this.

Beschorneria yuccoides.

06 May 2016 22:36:12
Beschorneria yuccoides.

Beschorneria yuccoides.

I am always so pleased when this flowers in May as it is not the hardiest of plants. I now cover it every winter as it was badly hit in the harsh winters a few years ago and took sometime to return to flowering. This year it seems to have two flower spikes and they will grow incredibly fast over the next week or two. The spikes will reach about six feet when it is fully open.

Romping Away.

06 May 2016 09:30:28

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I bought these Tulipa bakeries ' Lilac Wonder' about thirty years ago when we moved into this house and over the years they have spread underground and can pop up anywhere in this part of the garden. They have foliage all through the winter months and will flower for at least a month. They die off during the summer months and can look a bit unsightly but seeing them this morning opening up to the heat of the morning sun, you would have to forgive the thuggish behaviour.

Peter W.

06 May 2016 09:21:53

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Peter, how could you not just love these. Jacinta and myself will have to convert you. I look forward to their arrival every year.

The Lane in April

01 May 2016 09:15:33

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Despite the hailstones of the last week The Lane continues to green up and the lovely soft foliage has survived the torrential downpours. I feel the cool temperatures this month has prolonged the flowering of the daffodils. The Spanish bluebells are also out in force and if I had my time back again I would never have planted them. The old chestnut, which dominates The Lane, has it's flower buds and won't be long before it is in full bloom. This months plant in The Lane has to be the Acers. I have a number of Acer palmatum var, dissectum dotted through the west facing side and their soft and colourful spring foliage has to be one of the delights of Spring. Another shrub flowering for the last month or so has been the beautiful Stachyurus praecox 'Issai'. The buds are also on the large Rhododendrons that have been planted there nearly thirty year ago and should look good during May as they come into flower.

Yesterday I had a lovely evening at Lismore Castle attending the lecture by Dan Pearson  on the creation last year of his Chelsea garden in association with Chatsworth, where the garden was reconstructed during the autumn. Margaret(Hosta) and Ted K were also there and Margaret has put photos of the gardens at Lismore Castle on FB which were looking beautiful  on the cool and sunny evening.

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