a mediateam website

See a sample issue of The Irish Garden!








TheH (Hazel)'s Journal

TheH (Hazel)'s Journal January 2013

Last Post 1753 days 20 hours ago

Disaster averted .....

31 January 2013 22:49:21

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

you may remember my delight at getting two replacement Thuja conifers to replace the ones the cows ate ..... I was coming home from shopping this morning when I noticed that they were both at a very peculiar angle ....

The winds of the past few days had managed to loosen the roots of the two trees so remedial action was called for.

Literally dumping the shopping in the kitchen I raced in and changed into the gardening gear and out I went.

What to use? Well, I have an abundant supply of short steel rods from the early days when I had rabbit fences around everything so I loaded some fo these into the wheelbarrow (they are rather heavy when you have a bundle of them!)

And you may notice from the photos the very fetching blue twine - beore we even moved in here we had bought a huge reel of binding twine for marking out the site - so this just proves that if you keep anything long enough you'll find a use for it!

Attaching the stay-ropes was harder than I expected as the wind was still trying to do away with my beloved trees but eventually by dint of great bear-hugs and much tugging they were bot restored more or less to the vertical - now don't anyone comment that they are still off-centre .... they are worlds better than they were this morning! Never a dull moment in the garden!

When does a stone become a rock?

30 January 2013 18:50:16

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

I have been pondering this mystery today where despite the howling winds I ventured out in my "Antartic Gear" to do a chore that had been long-fingered for too long. Last Autumn I got a gift of a trailer load of stones & rocks from the clearing of a field or tillage. I used quite a few as edgings for my new non-grass front areas but then ran out of steam so the remainder has been sitting in the trailer ever since!

I did a bit of rough grading as I unloaded them - Large in one pile - are they large enough to be qualified as ROCKS? Flat-ish ones went in another pile - they may be useful as stepping stones in the beds. And then there are the in-between ones - rocks or stones? The final lot are definitely stones - they are roughly the size of a tennis ball and are perfect for edgings.

The afternoon turned out much better so I ventured out again and tackled a nice little project. I used some of the (small) stones from the trailer to edge a new path along by the willow fence. There was always a kind of track there which I used when trimming the fence but I wanted a more inviting path to encourage people down this way where the shrubbery can be seen to best advantage.

Then all that was needed was some of the left-over gravel from the front to give a nice dry surface for walking on! Done and dusted in an afternoon! It felt wonderful to be out in the garden again after what felt like an eternity and this kind of work is perfect for the chillier days - I was roasted when I came in but still enjoyed the stove!!!

I need it to stop raining - PLEASE!!!!

29 January 2013 17:35:01

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

I haven't managed to get outside for more than a few minutes for ages now - beenn budy with indoor non-gardening stuff, including the installation of a wood-burning in the lounge. This big adventure happened yesterday and the poor guys had to get up on the roof to install the flue in that awful stormy weather. I'm sitting here admiring the flames and catching up on the journals. I'm feeling really envious of all the enthusiastic seed planters and hope i can join them in the next few days!

This year I'm giving the spuds, peas, cabbage, beans, onions and tomatoes a miss due to the pathetic results last year! The only edibles I'm contemplating are 1. Carrots in a pot (went well last year) 2. Cut-and-come-again lettuce (actually worked!) and some scallions (which I haven't tried before. 

However, FLOWERS are another matter! I've been sorting through my seed packets and checking them in the gardening books so I'm finally ready to get planting .... but .... its very cold out there in the shed .... and it gets dark so early .... 

OK - now giving myself a talking-to - Just stop whingeing and get out there and plant up those seeds - they ain't going to grow themselves - and you have a little propagator for the really early ones. And this time follow all that good advice you keep getting about pinching things out and potting things on ....

Anyway, one of the 5-minute dashes to the garden gave me this pretty picture on my pretty Winter Aconite which is starting to bulk up a little bit this year. All i need is a large dose of patience :-)

When the sun shone ....

25 January 2013 23:36:26

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

... earlier this week I took the camera out and got some nice shots. The little tit on the birdhouse was quite tame and let me get close enough to take his portrait.

 The Euphorbia is Euphorbia Amygdaloides Purpurea which has seeded quite happily around my garden. It seems to have its best colour when it gets a bit of a blast of frost. (As you can see, I have't weeded this bed yet:-))

The last photo is a Cordaline which came to me as a tiny seedling at the beginning of this garden along with two siblings. This one was definitely the runt of the litter. Eldest brother grew well and started to have a little bit of a trunk but the winter of 2009 saw him off. Middle brother struggled a bit but the winter of 2010 finished him off too. But then the baby one, that had done virtually nothing for those years has decided he likes my garden and is definitely the best of the bunch!

Today being Deluge Day I've been curled up in an armchair reading ALL DAY!!! Well, I have a bit of a cold, so that's my excuse. LOL

So far so good .... no snow in Laois yet!!!

18 January 2013 23:43:30

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

I was all set to go shopping this morning - no, not plant shopping - just boring household shopping but the sun was cracking the stones here - and as I was hearing terrible things about weather on its way, I decided to defer the shopping and enjoy what may be the last bit of nice weather for a while!

Was I glad! It was mild and balmy so I got cracking on the Oak woodland - the east side of the front. It wasn't too bad - just did some cutting back and weeding. A very close second to the Bittersweet I mentioned recently is Celandine. I amd really torn about this little plant - it is so bright and cheery when it flowers in early Spring but it is a terrible spreader! I swing between trying to remove every trace of them and letting the rip - after all, they do disappear by the middle of the summer. Does anyone else have this kind of crisis of concience?

 

Making new beds

17 January 2013 18:35:11

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Last autumn I had to get rid of lots of grass/clover after the cattle invasion - you may have read in previous journals that I turned that disaster into an opportunity to redesign a large part of the front gardens.

This involved making some fairly large new beds and since I wasn't into weeks of digging, I sprayed it all off but then of course I was too impatient and hadn't time to wait for it to die - so I ended up using three different methods -

Method 1.

I had got some topsoil delivered as part of the compensation by the farmer so I put down thick layers of newspaper on one of the beds and covered it with the bought-in topsoil.

Method 2.

This was too expensive to do the whole area so the next method was to cover some of it with peat straight from the bog - the farmer called it "peatmould" - it's the fine stuff on top of the proper turf but it was late in our monsoon summer so we couldn't get enough as the bog was too wet!

Method 3.

The final bed was turned over - the sods replaced upside down.

Results so far:

I've planted bulbs in all three beds - the paper & topsoil bed was hard to do as the paper hasn't broken down much - no weeds so far, but hard to get deep enough for the bulbs so the birds have managed to uproot quite a few. The peat beds seem to have killed off most of the grass and when planting in these areas the peat gets mixed with the soil which is really improving the soil. I'll probably dig over these beds properly in the spring. But the bis surprise is the final bed - my soil is heavy clay, but the "lawn" had started out as a clover lawn and unlike Rachel's helper, I took fairly substantial sods to turn over so the end result is a transformation of this soil - the clover is breaking down and there are big juicy worms in the soil - something I'm not used to!!!

Useful few days ....

17 January 2013 17:08:21

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Well, Elizabeth stayed with me a few days over the weekend and as usual couldn't be kept out of the garden despite the artic East wind! We got a great lot done - got a lot of the Johnstown goodies though there are still a good few in the "plants in waiting" corner!

The Herbaceous border beside the house has been over-run with the Bitter-cress weed described in this month's magazine - we call it "mother of millions" because it is so prolific! Elizabeth encouraged me to get started on that bed by removing 500 plants at one go! We are putting them in the bin to try to slow down their plans for world domination! I agree with everything in the article - loves damp soil - flowers all year round - spreads like mad - if only we had garden plants that were so easy to propagate :-)

Thanks Fran for the little slip of your great fuschia - it is happily potted up in the greenhouse with its only little micro-climate plastic bag - so we shall see if it takes!

Been too busy today to go outside but tomorrow is another day ... and there are always more plants to plant!

I've copied Paddy (I think) by getting some lollipop sticks to label the plants - hopefully they will be more successful than the plastic ones - many of them have faded to invisible, while the birds have removed quite a few - they have even relocated them to different parts of the beds so I am bound to get really confused :-( Will report on the success or failure later in the season!

I find that at this time of year even a short spell in the garden seems to yield great results - weeds come up easier and forked-over beds look good for at least until the weeds reappear!

 

Two little orphans ....

15 January 2013 13:34:33
Cute little Rosemary

Cute little Rosemary

Just did a bit of an inventory on all the wonderful stuff that came home in the boot from Johnstown and thanks to the lovely clear labelling on them, I have identified all but two little orphans, both plant names and kind donors!

The two little orphans are:

1. A cute little Rosemary

2. A Hosta Blue Moon

It was a great idea to have our stuff labelled and listed and it was funny to see people scurrying about clutching lists in Deborah's great videos - but those lists certainly paid off for me at any rate - I ended up actually collecting ALL the lovely things I'd been promised and also a few more - as you do at these events :-D And i managed to give the bits I'd promised to others out as well! 

I can't remember who suggested the double labelling - the giver and the receiver - but whoever you are, take a bow! 

 

....tired but happy ......

13 January 2013 21:29:49

Reminder .... JGT aka Johnstown Get-Together

12 January 2013 21:25:56
G'night!

G'night!

Hi.

Just a checklist of the things I'm trying not to forget for tomorrow:

1. Please park in the LEFT car-park - makes it much easier for plant swapping etc.

2. Don't forget your Kris Kindle! If you're not in, you can't win! Please give it to Bruno who is organising it this year.

3. If you have something for the raffle please give it to Deborah or me when you arrive

4. Jacinta is slaving away making badges for everyone so please seek her out and get your badge!

5. If you are bringing plants for others please put your name on them as well as the plant name and the person its for!

So now travellers .... get to bed nice and early and before you know it the BIG DAY will be here :-)

Jack Frost

12 January 2013 11:02:56

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

The other morning we had a good frost so I took some quick snaps - I particularly like the way the Hazel looks as if it still has its Christmas decorations on!

Yet another request for Johnstown

12 January 2013 10:54:52

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Hi Everyone.

I nearly forgot to put up this request. Fran has kindly agreed to be the "official photographer" for the day taking those sneaky little shots he is so good at - but he doesn't have a wide-angled lens so could one of you posh people with fancy cameras bring one along to take the group photos please?

Hope all the Kris Kindles are wrapped and the swaps organised - and we are all set for ta really great day!

Can I particularly ask people who haven't been to any other gatherings to come to me or Jacinta and make themselves known - Jacinta is doing a trojan job with name tags which should help!

I have to confess that I am not the best at remembering names, but I always recognise the lovely friendly smiles of my fellow .iers!!!

Am I an Optimist or what?

08 January 2013 18:39:01

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Last September I found a forgotten packet of wallflower seeds so rather than put them away till next year I decided to plant them anyway! Well, they germinated well and the little plants grew quite well but they weren't big enough to transplant in the Autumn. Yesterday and today I took the bull by the horns and planted them out - yesterday's plants look happy to have more space to spread themselves already! 

So it will be interesting to see how they do now!

It was such a great day here today that I spent most of it in the garden and really enjoyed it. There was a lovely Chaenomeles "Pink Trail" that I got as a present waiting to be planted, so that went in.

I also needed to move a Leycesteria from the Stream area - there were two there and they took from each other - one of the nicest things about this shrub is how its branches  fountain so having two close together wasn't ideal. These came from my sister Elizabeth when I started the garden - she had grown an astonishing selection of plants for me when she knew I was moving to the country and would have a big garden! So when I dug up this shrub lo and behold it was actually two slips in one! So I was able to separate them and find homes for them in the woodlands in the front of the house.

Still have to find a home for the Trachycarpus fortunei that I got as a gift from Bakker. I have it in the greenhouse at the moment until I can decide where to plant it. this is the best part of gardening - finding the perfect spot for our precious plants!

I really hope to have any backlogs planted before Johnstown or else I'll never get ahead of the planting :-D

 

Raffle at the Get-together - volunteer needed!

07 January 2013 12:22:17
Raffle at the Get-together - volunteer needed!

Raffle at the Get-together - volunteer needed!

We have some nice prizes for our raffle next Sunday - but I need someone with a good strong voice to call out the winning numbers - can I have a volunteer please?

Also anyone wishing to donate further prizes please contact me.

Latest list for Johnstown

07 January 2013 12:13:08

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Here is the latest list for Johnstown - if I have left you out please let me know!

Names so far
150220121 (Annmarie) 1
AitAlainn - (Nuala) 1
Biddy 1
BlarneyCastle -Adam 1
BrunoCork 1
ClaireE 1
Clara 1
Conrad 1
Damo19 1
Dana 1
Deborah 1
Dick 1
eilish 1
Elizabeth II (my sister) 1
Elizabeth7 1
Ellis (Anne) 1
Fran M 1
Fraoch (Heather) 1
Hoeys 1
Hosta 1
Ingrid15 1
Jacinta 2
Jemo 1
JoanG 1
Joann 1
Kate & Graham 2
Keego (Mary) 1
Krista 1
Ladybird 2
Liga 1
LindaB 1
Mairin 1
Michele Maria 1
Millimouse 1
Moya 1
Pwiseman 1
Rachel 1
Scrubber 1
Sunjak50 (Terry Smith) 1
Terrishoos 2
TheH (hazel) 1
Violeta 1
Yellow Rose (Bernie) 1
   
   
Maybes
Wellie (Angie McDonagh)  

Looking forward to seeing you all there!

Gardening journal for a change :-)

05 January 2013 15:26:33

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

I seem to post nothing but get-together journals recently so I thought I'd give an update on what I've been up to when not adding names to lists etc. :-)

I started the New Year with a resolution not to over-do the gardening - you know, just do a bit each day .... 

Day one was fine - just did about an hour or so of weeding in one of the raised beds in the lower garden. This area had vegetables last year but another resolution for this year is to give veggies a miss - my soil is too awful and despite my hard work the results were very disappointing - so now I have some nice raised beds for planting and the ideas are coming fast and furious! The bed in question had gone a bit wild last year when the french beans I planted failed to appear so I had a wonderful crop of buttercups interspersed with Lysimachia that had been in some soil I used to fill the bed last year.

Day two and the resolution went out the window! Had to get that bed finished or die trying - and then it needed to be filled up so the compost heap was emptied into it. By this time it was pretty dark so Brendan was sending out search parties! Came in pretty much on my knees after all that!

Day three wasn't too bad - just tidied up the bed with all the helebores and spring bulbs in it - only went out at about 3.30 so darkness drove me in at about 5 with a sense of satisfaction at getting that bed completed!

Today I decided to do my bit of gardening in the morning - which proved to be a good idea since it has been spilling rain here since lunch-time! Tackled the area beside the Buddha - now greatly enlarged since the remake of the front gardens. I'm happy to see that the daffodils I planted last year are making an appearance and the soil in that bed seems to have benefited from just digging in the clover in the autumn. 

So I'm a happy camper now - with two beds in the front tidied and one of the raised beds rescued all in the first week of January! 

Johnstown Get-together - Who have I left out?

04 January 2013 20:52:36
Johnstown Get-together - Who have I left out?

Johnstown Get-together - Who have I left out?

REVISED LIST 

So here we are - just over a week till our get-together - so for anyone who missed the details up to this:

The venue is Johnstown Garden Centre

The date is Sunday 13th January at 1p.m.

I've been doing my best to keep track of the names of those who plan to attend - if I have left anyone out please let me know ASAP. I need to give Johnstown an idea of numbers by Monday at the latest so if you haven't replied yet, please do so now.

List

150220121 (Annmarie) 1
AitAlainn - (Nuala) 1
Biddy 1
BlarneyCastle -Adam 1
BrunoCork 1
ClaireE 1
Clara 1
Conrad 1
Damo19 1
Dick 1
eilish 1
Elizabeth II (my sister) 1
Elizabeth7 1
Ellis (Anne) 1
Fran M 1
Fraoch (Heather) 1
Hoeys 1
Hosta 1
Ingrid15 1
Jacinta 1
Jemo 1
JoanG 1
Joann 1
Kate & Graham 2
Keego (Mary) 1
Krista 1
Ladybird 1
LindaB 1
Mairin 1
Millimouse 1
Moya 1
Pwiseman 1
Rachel 1
Scrubber 1
Sunjak50 (Terry Smith) 1
Terrishoos 2
TheH (hazel) 1
Violeta 1
Yellow Rose (Bernie) 1

 

Looking forward to seeing you all there!

 

 

Anyone expecting plants from me?

03 January 2013 11:58:12

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Ok - so I'm supposed to be organising the Johnstown Get-together - wouldn't you think that I could organise my own stuff?

Well, I was carefully noting when I promised plants to people at some point in the year, in one of the many notebooks where I jot down things so I won't forget them. After much searching I found the list but it is a bit pathetic....

For Peter - Dark Sidalcea (possibly "Party Girl")

For Elizabeth (Liztai) - Fuschia "Flashlight" -

                                  Yellow Allysum - not sure if it has survived

                                  Lysimachia Punctata 

 

For Jacinta - deliver a Kniphofia from Elizabeth

Now I am sure I promised other people thngs so if I did, please let me know!

I also have 

              Astrantia Ruby Wedding x 3 - Elizabeth7 & Eilish - 1 left

             Leucanthemum Superbum Becky 

             Lysimachia Punctata x 5

            Ajuga Reptans 'Bronze Beauty' x 3 - Elizabeth7 - 2 left

            Pulmonaria longifolia Diana Clare x 3 - Aitaileann - 2 left

So just let me know if you would like any of these. I'm going out now to do a bit of tidying so there may be other candidates!

 

Gathering - garden.ie style!

01 January 2013 14:50:32

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Sitting here with the sun streaming in the window I’m thinking of all the reasons why we make our way to Johnstown Garden Centre in chilly January each year.

 My Number One reason is to meet face-to-face and have some fun with my virtual friends who have shared my highs and lows during the gardening year. Members who post or comment regularly are the life of this club and I’m sure I am not alone in receiving really sound advice and encouragement over the year.

 Johnstown Garden Centre have made us very welcome for the past few years, reserving a special area for us where we can enjoy a nice meal or snack in the company of our friends. The laughter and teasing at the tables is a real sign of friendships being celebrated. It is often surprising to meet someone face to face that you have been meeting online for ages!

 I love the Kris Kindle too – it feels like when I was a child going to see Santa! I hope that all of you who come will participate as it is really good fun.

 It is not a coincidence that we hold this gathering during the January Sale in Johnstown Garden Centre. I have heard through the grapevine that Johnstown welcome members ordering stuff beforehand for collection that day. I might even be lucky enough to win one of the vouchers that Johnstown kindly donates to us each year.

 And finally it is the opportunity to hand over promised plants to friends.

 I hope that if you have been chatting away online this year that you will do your best to join us for our annual bash!

 p.s. Don’t forget to let me know if you are coming so we can be sure there is room for you at the table :-)

Members

Garden.ie Members

Not a member yet?
Join now to:

Join Now

Existing Members


Forgotten password
 

Friends

Showing 6 of 130
Friends of TheH (Hazel)
view all friends >


Garden.ie CLUB

Join Ireland's first online garden club! Share pictures of your garden, make new friends and chat with other gardeners. It's simple to join and free! Register Here

Featured Members


Know-How!

Thousands of gardening facts at your finger tips:


Ask Gerry

Gerry DalyTry our unique advice service from editor Gerry Daly. Got a question right now? Search here to see if it has been answered already:








a mediateam website



©2017 Garden.ie. Mediateam Ltd, Media House, South County Business Park, Leopardstown, Dublin 18.


Tel (+353 1) 2947777 Email info@garden.ie

Website Design by KCO.ie