organic, recycled gardens …?

...unless you own a truck that is

...unless you own a truck that is

Why is there a picture of a man sitting on a truck at the bottom of this post…? The man is my good friend Thomas. You may know him from his most unusual garden guest post here. But you may also know Thomas from the much famed Irish Allotments – something, unknowns to most, he does in his spare time. All told that makes him a pretty good guy. And he is. Genuinely.

Anyhow Thomas and Máire [another story, but, via genuinely the sincerest gesture of genorosity I’ve ever heard – yes niceness still exists 🙂 ] have just moved out of their apartment and into their first house home. Naturally, like all young couples – the extra dollars didn’t exist for their first garden to look like Southfork immediately… and Thomas being an eco-geek like myself wanted it to have a story anyway charachter.

Tommy, would you like a recycled garden… ? gardens gardens

To answer the original question… We had taken apart a garden recently and rather than dump the stone to landfill, I called Thomas. Client also agreed and felt it was very much the ‘thing to do’. A truck was hired for one hundred euro.

What had actually accumulated was

  • 45 metres squared paving
  • 2 tonne of decorative gravel
  • 20 metres squared steppings
  • 25 metres squared cobbles
  • and some chicken wire
  • …and a half sheet of trellice


I thought of some of my friends, years ago, when the starter home and mortgage deposits were being paid back to the sibblings they were borrowed from [funny thing, a story like that would probably make the news today 🙂 ]. A shed, a fence, a something to enhance the eyesore was required and we all chipped in. All of the friends. There were *no* complaints, it was the done thing. Feng Shui’s weren’t on the wish list. Thomas was starting were I started 🙂

As a by the way he lives in Cork and although I will be there whenever he needs help… I will not be responsible for the final outcome of the ‘design’. Note no.2 is that apart from the truck hire of €100 all materials were taken/ given free gratis. More important. There was a massive feel good factor for all parties concerned. Everyone felt good about this story. Thomas has also agreed to write a little story with pictures of the complete garden and its progress on his weblog:)

So from now, if I do a garden and the client decides/ agrees with the decision to do so – I will take the ‘whatever it is’ to my home rather than to landfill [where possible] and write a post on my blog to see if we can find a good home for it.

What do you think?

12 replies
  1. Julian
    Julian says:

    I think it’s a great idea. I ended up with a few plants coming home and doing the garden equivalent of kipping on the sofa when I was gardening for a living; but because the www wasn’t really in the picture then, they never found the homes they might have.

    A plant and hard landscaping exchange page might just take off. The paving &c. looks so much better anyway when it’s lived a little, and there are so few salvage yards here, I’m sure you’d have hordes of takers once word got out.

  2. Caroline@Bibliocook
    Caroline@Bibliocook says:

    That sounds like a great idea Peter. We’ve recently put an entrance in at the side of the cottage so there’s a whole heap of garden planning and landscaping to do and we normally manage that by spending as little as possible. We often rely on cast offs from relatives and friends – the last one was an oil-fired range, now sitting at my parents’ place, just waiting for us to have a space for it! I’ll be keeping an eye on the site in case you’ve more garden leftovers…

  3. Ann
    Ann says:

    So love the idea of sharing reusables instead of having them go to landfills. I’d enjoy seeing pics of items getting second or third lives put into new uses.

  4. Peter Donegan MI Hort
    Peter Donegan MI Hort says:

    A Chara Ann

    great to see you again 😯

    When he gets the garden complete – i’ll look forward to posting another of the finished product… it’ll take a bit of time – he got a lot of stuff.

    Just shows what you can do… 😆
    slan agus beannacht

  5. Ann
    Ann says:

    I can’t stay away from a good thing! Missed visiting your positive works and conscientious community here!

    Hope Thomas’ creativity brings some clever uses to the materials. Looking forward to hearing/seeing more.

    Síochán leat


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