A Sound Weekend

More a weekend of sound…. see what you think ?

Friday evening – pitch and putt club annual outing

Ended up in playing guitar in the resulting trad session

Saturday, I met Ger who was checking the mosture in barley

After I dropped into Philip who makes elder flower champagne

Sunday morning, listening to the birds at 6am

My first time to play pitch and putt in Ballyboughal

The hens needed some TLC and their house a spring clean

My thoughts on promoting horticulture after reading the weekends papers

Some time with Ella….

I also got a little relaxation in….. a little!


And finally the rain stopped long enough to get the grass cut

Ever Wondered What It Takes To Grow A Plant…?



October Bank Holiday Weekend, I went to Kilkenny. I had so much to do….

On my agenda was to meet my good friend & plant inventor Pat Fitzgerald.

I had interviewed Pat for the blog before. I had also worked with Pat on so many of my projects and gardens… but I’d never seen his nursery. The place, his place to be more exact, the place where the plants I have designed into projects, designs and gardens are born, reared and looked after. This is where I started to get excited….

Excited ? About plants…? On a bank holiday weekend…? Have I nothing else better to be doing…? I wouldn’t swap what I love doing so much for anything else in the world 😆

Pat, in my opinion 😉 is a little bit special in the Irish context of horticulture in that 85-90% of his plants are exported to places like Japan & The USA.. thats a total of almost 3.5 million plants as a by the way…. not bad?!!

*disclaimer: I’ve never received money from Pat for anything I have ever done. I simply think he’s got a different and an interesting story. More than that… he’s one of lifes good guys. More importantly, he’s got a sense of humour and enjoys a pint on a Friday night. shame I have to put a disclaimer in at all being honest….

Heres’s the first video I did with Pat… nice story 😉

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the bloom in the park ’09 experience

The sun is splitting the skies, the Phoenix Park looks spectacluar…. you simply can’t imagine what a show Bloom in the Park has turned out to be.

To only mention the gardens is, maybe, what I should be doing…. but, as a garden builder and designer at Bloom – they are all [seriously] amazing and I simply can’t be pushed to just pick one. Anyone who designs and/ or builds a garden here is a genius in my eyes 😉 I will however give an over view of the  entire Bloom experience & some of the interesting people I met on my sabatical 😆

The beautiful Maeve Desmond [International PR for Bord Bia] lets you know what you can expect to see…

If kids entertainment is what you really want…? Go meet the wonderful Orla from Imaginosity. They have an amazing kids interactive garden event [amongst many things] going on just behind the tea rooms at the visitor centre. Go see. Bring the kids you’ll love it…..

More interesting people….. Ever wondered what The Irish Wildlife Trust really do… ?

Of course I met literally hundreds of people that I knew…. here’s a few quick snaps for you to get a gist of what else is going on.

And last but not least….. do get there early. It’s well worth it…. but, I’m guessing the traffic will be a little crazy-er than the Thursday. That said, it is the All-Ireland of garden shows…

To the big question…. would I go again? 110% absolutely yes. [I’ll be back on saturday] I loved every second of it. I got a great chance to speak to the public, the people involved and the traders… One girl sold out of bread in the food stall within 3 hours ?!! Another lady I spoke thought it was great value for money…. others felt it was better laid out this year and that there was more seating…. call it what you like, compliment what you wish… but honestly, the only complaint I heard was that the sun had been shining too much and extra watering would be required in order to have the gardens looking their best for tomorrow 🙂

Do go. Do enjoy. Do let me know what you think after. My opinion 5/5. Well deserved. Take a bow Bord Bia. Bulaidh Bós Mór 😉

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[show] garden s.o.s.

a little bit of a hole...

in a little bit of a hole....

This is Rebecca Thorne. She is building a garden in Bloom in the Phoenix Park this June Bank Holiday weekend.

Rebecca emailed me some weeks ago. Words of wisdom [hmmm?] were requested. A pot of tea, some apple tart and a drive to Ballyboughal later…

Today I went to The war Memorial Gardens in Islandbridge. On my way back I stopped by the coffee shop in The Phoenix Park… and I spot what I believed to be Rebecca’s garden… it was.

From here it is difficult. Not to speak ‘not’ politically correct of [so to speak]. Show gardening as I know only to well is not real garden building. It is more than just one person. And it soaked 3 years from my life… easily. From the planning and preparation, to the building and the financial… but! I have been doing this all my life. I have resources, friends, suppliers – a team, the back up and who are all so used to the pressures that come with.

The Trouble… Rebecca in her own words thought… ‘well, I’d like to do that’. Trouble is it’s not that easy. Her plants were ordered from Holland… the wrong sizes arrived. She has a full time job – [not horticulture related] she can only work the evenings and weekends on this project. She has enlisted the help of family and friends [Hi Eamonn!!]. I saw new wellingtons for the first time since I went to college. She has a budget of €1,800… And of course there’s that rain thing…

The Reality…That said…. she is doing it. She will do it. It has to be done. It is Bloom 2009 and the opening date cannot be changed. It is that simple.

What Can You Do… in short, she needs hands. Even if just for an hour or a day. You might say you’d be no help… but you will even if its only using a brush… If you ever fanced a look behind the scenes of the realities of show gardening this is your chance. Don’t leave it until tomorrow…. do it today!! Now!! The lady has about 10 days………… go!!!!!!!

Contact Rebecca

...or just drop by and say hello at the show

...or just drop by and say hello at the show

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