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The [Un]usual Planter

Here, you have that. You might be able to do something with it….

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That’s quite a regular statement I hear actually. Surprised ? I wasn’t. It’s not the most unusual object I’ve ever been handed. I like the odd challenge and this one was a doddle.

Yesterday I filled the container with some pebble. More to weight it down. It also looks really good. I also had a few hand fulls of pebble in my workshop, so it suited. It also saves on compost and in this case I didn’t have enough 😉

Helen had given me some spider plant babies a while ago that had come on really well…. and I had a spot inside where I felt it would look really good.

Total cost. €0.00

Personally, I’d be over the moon if someone gave me that as a gift.

12 New Plants To The Market – From Ireland

I have interviewed my good friend Pat Fitzgerald before. Twice actually.

But when a Kilkenny man brings 12 new plants to the market, already employs 35 people and exports [some as far as Japan] over 85% of all of his plants grown…. I think it’s more than news worthy. An Irish man selling Japanese style plants in Japan….? Add to that the fact that he’d be considered quite young in an Irish nursery business to have achieved what he has.

To horticulture, some of the plants have just come online, most have never been seen before and others have already award winning. For those not in the plant breeding business and for want of a better definition, put simply, somebody has invented these plants. More details on that below.

From a plant enthusiasts perspective, a picture is one thing. A video is another. Take a look and see what you think.

Pictures and descriptions are below.

  1. Carex oshimensis Evergreen is similar to the species form of the Oshima sedge from Japan with wonderful simple brown tipped abundances of flower in Spring. Almost 1 million Carex plants will be produced by Pat in 2010. Evergreen provides a simple natural and relaxing under planting or feature plant in containers and this from was selected for its more compact growth and depth of colour.
  2. Libertia ixiodes Goldfinger bred at Naturally Native Nurseries in New Zealand and marketed in Europe by Plantipp Netherlands on behalf of New Zealand’s Lyndale Nurseries Kiwi Gold native New Zealand plant collection. Ideal for containers in the colder regions and mass planting in coastal and milder parts. Goldfinger will tolerate temperatures of -5 C to -7 C but below these temperatures will need protection with heavy fleece covering. This fantastic plant has white flowers in May and the foliage colour changes from butter yellow to old gold as temperatures decrease through Autumn and Winter.
  3. Carex trifida Rekohu Sunrise Another representative from New Zealand’s native flora. This is the first introduction from the trifida species of Carex and in New Zealand is commonly known as Muttonbird Sedge due to the flowers resembling the feet of the native Muttonbird. Rekohu Sunrise was bred by Mr Terry Hatch of Joy Nurseries in New Zealand. Rekohu Sunrise can be cut right back to tidy it up in March /early April and will produce vigorous but compact shoots of wonderful bright foliage.
  4. Ophiopogon nigrascens and its other mondo grass relatives are some of hardiest, functionally attractive and most versatile dwarf ground cover plants available. Slow growing ground hugging and with wonderful detail in flower and berry what more can one ask from a plant but there is more. Ophiopogon nigrascens is drought tolerant, will grow in shade semi shade and full sun and is hardy to at least -15 C. This Japanese native provides attractive ground cover in the garden and develops lilac coloured flower spikes which on mature plants set attractive black berries. There is also an improved variety of this wonderful plant and its called Blackbeard. Bred by Steve Yandell from Penzance it has faster growth, longer leaves and a greater clumping habit.
  5. Canna Tropicanna is a Tropical perennial plant introduced by Mr Keith Kirsten from South Africa named and marketed around the world by Anthony Tesselaar International. Tropicanna has led to two other varieties, Tropicanna Black and Tropicanna Gold. Canna Generally has a reputation for being difficult to grow by some people, but it can be a wonderful addition to the small garden and should not be ignored for those of us with foliage colour lust. Tropicanna also has amazing flowers.
  6. Royal Hawaiian Colocasia go on sale in Europe generally in Spring early Summer 2011 although some baby plants will be available a little earlier. The collection comes from an internationally acclaimed breeder Dr John J Cho who has achieved outstanding success with his new line of ornamental Colocasias.
  7. Cordyline australis Karo Kiri is a most unusual variety of the common Cordyline we see all over Ireland in our coastal towns and cites. Karo Kiri is an easily maintained dwarf form and is versatile in containers or small gardens. It comes from New Zealand breeder and selector Ross Baybliss
  8. Carex oshimensis Everest Pat has been growing Carex for 20 years now and having been bought stock of the well known Carex Evergold as a birthday present (another long story) the year he set up FitzGerald Nurseries. Now the biggest producer of Carex oshimensis possibly in the world. Carex oshimensis thrives in the Irish climate and is a versatile plant for the garden or containers. Sometimes misused it leads to unsightly clumps in exposed and sodden landscapes. It is ideally suited to sheltered urban gardens, will thrive in semi shade situations and in containers giving the most wonderful white margins seen on any plant. Everest was picked as an entrant in the recent American Idols plant competition in USA and won a Silver medal at Plantarium in Boskoop Netherlands.
  9. Carex oshimensis Everillo was first launched at the wonderful Hillsborough Show in Northern Ireland earlier in May and was only just discovered in 2008 and is set for a worldwide release in Spring 2012. This is how long it takes even a relatively fast to produce plant such as Everillo. A fantastic addition for shade and semi shade and is a Japanese native bred for its colour.
  10. Phormium cookianum Black Adder now sold to Japan, Australia, its native New Zealand USA and most European countries. Black Adder was selected over 6 years ago has been a wonderful success story adopted by many nurseries including leading New Zealand Nursery Lyndale Nurseries as the number one black / purple Phormium. Black Adder won best container plant award for FitzGerald Nurseries at the worlds largest professional Horticulture Show IPM Essen Germany in 2008.
  11. Yucca gloriosa Bright Star a winner at IPM Essen 2009 with first prize for best patio container plant. Bright Star was discovered at Walberton Nursery West Sussex England by Mr Tim Crowther, promoted by Plants For Europe and introduced into production in Europe by FitzGerald Nurseries. Bright Star is an outstanding colour selection of the hardy and drought tolerant Yucca gloriosa. It has pink colouring which comes during drought or cold weather conditions.
  12. Cordyline fruticosa Caruba Black is a tropical Cordyline from Anthony Tesselaar and produced exclusively in Europe by FitzGerald Nurseries. Unlike its more hardy cousin C. australis Caruba Black needs temperatures over 3 C to maintain its attractive appearance and colour so must only be used as a Summer dot plant to give a tropical exotic look to borders or containers. It can even be cut back in spring to encourage multiple stems.
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Irish Blog Award 2010

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The 2nd round results for the Irish Blog Awards 2010 were announced today.

This year I wasn’t as fortunate. That’s allowed. Those remaining in the race really are an amazing list of  weblogs. My congratulations sincerely to each and every one of them and sincerley also to the sponsors. Big bulaidh bós mór there.

Of course I’d like to win every category, but I don’t particularly undertsand techie stuff. I just know how to use it. On the other hand give me a tree and ask me it’s sisters name and I will make it talk to you. 😉

As I said in 2009 and in 2010

That said – awards or not, it is because of *you* that I write and to be simply nominated is reason enough for me to smile

Best of wishes to each and everyone of you once again. Still…. was nice to see my name and a flower in there somewhere 🙂

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Nominated For The Irish Blog Awards 2010

Last year this weblog was nominated for the irish blog awards 2009. And this year somebody nominated this green blog again 😉

As you are most likely well aware there is a long way to go and so I shall [appropriately] quote myself from last year once again…

That said – awards or not, it is because of *you* that I write and to be simply nominated is reason enough for me to smile

To quote The Awards Blog

please thank the sponsors for once again investing in the Blog Awards and making it happen. Why not link to them and thank? Please congratulate your felllow nominees and read some of the many new blogs that have come along this year and tell others of them.

And so I say, thank you to the IBA10 team of organisers judges and behind the scenes, all of the sponsors and in this case iQ Content. Also as Damien says and rightly so, to the so many amazing blogs in this list a virtual ‘pat on the back‘.

Take a leaf through…. there’s certainly a lot of amazing blogs and people in there. 🙂

Best Specialist Blog

– Sponsored by iQ Content

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Get Your Garden [Group] Boots On….?

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UPDATE: 15th Jan ’09

names are now officially being taken for the first garden group gig.The list below was as an expression of interest…. please go to the post below and get yer name on 😉

http://blog.doneganlandscaping.com/2010/01/15/the-garden-groups-first-adventure/

So it was sometime last year that the suggestion came in to set a garden group up…. and I did… but not a whole lot happened with it for so many varying reasons… but thats another story and this is 2010.

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It’s a new year and it’s time I got things grooving in this department…..

With that in mind I am setting the date for our first gig on Saturday 30th January or the 6th February 2009. [recent email tells me to await confirmation from venue and for our guide/ host – however this will be more exact/ finite in the next day/s or so….. bear with me 😉 appreciated in advance]

I have a few places and people in mind as a first meeting…. but you reading this may have somewhere that the group could/ should visit – if so go ahead and make yourself famous.

Other than that it is a case of numbers…. If you are interested pop your name down below and watch this space for more info.

My thinking is that it is [for the moment] would entail a personalised tour of a grounds or gardens [that would be interesting!!!….] especially for us! Depending on the how the first goes and suggestions come in then maybe we can see if and how direction changes. Of course no money would be required and maybe if weather was good enough you may bring a packed lunch and we could have a picnic…. I’m waiting for confirmation at this moment in time but should have an answer back in the next few days….. again it’s a little of a numbers game as well…. slightly vague [?] but gardens made good craic is the idea….

As I said in the first post

are you interested in the greeny garden outdoors kinda thing but don’t want to fall asleep within the first 7 minutes seconds ….? ;)

what if we became the hippest bunch of jimmedy crickets ever to cross the green line ?

A bit like the Dublin Twook Club crossed with the photobloggers, but different-ish ;)

All of the great bits of green and horticulture – except in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt [if thats what you like to wear ;) ]

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