Stuck inside today with the rain falling, thank God nothing like what they had up in the north from Derry to Donegal and further afield the reports coming out of Texas are horrendous. For us it’s just drizzle but enough to bring me indoors.
I have a new project on the go down in the village. We have three polytunnels at the Community Centre which get used to grow food for the Social Centre. Mostly potatoes and there are some very large marrows and courgettes in a couple of them. With the last harvest of spuds one of them is empty for the winter and I am preparing it for some winter cabbage, turnips and a few other ideas.
I am starting my horticulture course in a couple of weeks and I am hoping that I will be able to try out some of my new knowledge in the polytunnels a mixture of homework and revision! It is quite hard work preparing it as there is a fair amount of couch or twitch grass and I don’t use chemicals so it’s a job for the fork and spade. Not too difficult in the main part of the bed but hard going at the edge of the plastic, still progress is being made.
The garden is not only for plants and flowers it is also a place for activities and we had an end of summer party for my two eldest kids, who invited a few friends over and we put up tents, built a fire with seating around it and cleared out one of the old sheds and did it up as a “love shack” as a hang-out it case it rained.
We were lucky with the weather and they were singing around the fire late into the night as I headed to bed. The next day I managed to round up a few bodies to help shift my new statue into the big field, I haven’t put it up yet but I have managed to dig a hole for it and when it stops raining I’ll put it up.
I don’t have many statues in the garden and I am not one for “commissioning” art work but when my mum asked me what I would like for my birthday I asked for a contribution towards something for the garden and we now must have one of the biggest gnomes in West Cork, thanks to Nathan of Wyrdwood who carved this for me using a chainsaw. It is actually Neptune and he will end up staring out to sea.
There is some nice colour out in the garden at the moment with some beautiful red gladioli and crimson lobelia. I can see the white buds forming on the heather which is a sure sign of autumn and there are a few things to collect including blackberries, elderberries and rose hips for making syrup.
I have taken a load of cuttings of pink buddleia, honeysuckle, clematis, and hydrangea. I was round my friends’ house yesterday and they have a lovely lace cap hydrangea so I’m hoping to add one of them to the collection. The white one in the front garden seems to flower throughout the year and I consequently consider it great value.
We had a family day out to Sherkin Island which is just off the south coast near the village Baltimore. I have been out a few times over the years coaching table tennis but Kate hadn’t been there since she was 12yrs old. It was a fun family trip and we just did a short walk around and I managed to collect a few cuttings. I like to try and collect a couple of plants from places for the garden, a good few years ago I got a lovely white Fuscia cutting from Cape Clear Island and it has really established itself well all over the garden now.
We finished our trip off at the Jolly Rodger where I found a Verbascum in seed in the beer garden, my last Verbascum came from Wales and I am hoping it might reseed itself but just in case I now have some seed from a smaller specimen and in two years time(they are biannual) it I hope it will be a pleasant reminder of a day out to the island with the family.