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solanum crispum glasnevin

solanum-crispum-glasnevin

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there are about 1,400 members to the solanum family. I particularly like this one climber mainly for its blue and yellow dotted trailing flowers. A member of the potatoe family… for that reason I believe] I find this beauty always does well in Irish soils given half a chance.

The crispum members of the solanum family are also known as the chilean potatoe tree –If you wish to delve more into the plant names gig then click here to read more – They’re a group of fast growing, evergreen climbers that can grow to an eventual of 20 foot tall.

It is above all the first climber to make **the list** for good reason… it grows easily almost anywhere, it’ll take a good beating when it needs a little cutting back [great  for those who can’t look after plants so well] and worth ever s[c]ent it will cost you.  Above all of that it is an absolute stunner. Enjoy!

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ardgillan demesne

ardgillan demense

ardgillan demense

I went to see Ardgillan Demesne; It is a park, a castle [but not a true castle…], a playground, a gardens…  the second Sunday in March. It is by far the finest example of a park I have seen in Ireland to date.

Unlike Malahide Castle – all parts of the ‘demesne’ were open. It is put simply, amazing. I truly love it.

I could list every point of what was great – but – everything was great… except for the weather. Which was great by the time I was leaving. From start to finish including the coffee shop [and the photographs on the walls from Balbriggan Photography Society] was perfect. There wasn’t a hair out of place.

If I could give this park a 6 out of 5 rating I would. Well done to the grounds staff – you really have taken how a park and gardens should be maintained to a new high.

Malahide Demesne

The first Sunday of March I went to Malahide Castle [also called park or demesne]. I like the park. I’ve been here before. But it’s been a while.

As an open space – I love it. But the park holds much more than green fields.

On the one hand I wouldn’t mind if there were some exemplary bedding displays. But also the model railway museum was closed and the Talbot Botanic gardens of the park were closed. I understand why the park would close them from a horticultural point of view – but I want to see ‘a specific plant’ at its worst [overwintering state] and at it’s finest. I want to see it as it progresses through the seasons. Thats what I’d like. A little one to many paddlocks and closed gates – with notice of opening times by the month…. ,

However, it does have an amazing playgorund. It is in the overall context very well maintained. The coffee shop is great. It’s got the little craft stores contained within. Outside of that, the backdrop of the castle is glorious. The grounds are in itself well layed out and it is constantly busy. No matter what I say – I still spent a good 3 hours there and loved roaming the ‘lesser’ routes with ‘herself’.

national tree week

Blog posting #300 🙂  March 1st – 7th 2009 is National Tree Week. It’s a cool week. There’s loads of tree events on – literally all over the country. There is no excuse not to get involved. I have some posts on trees, trees, trees and trees here to get you in the groove. That said if you don’t want to plant a tree yourself – you can always sponsor a tree – and it will be planted for you.

The trees don’t have to be huge – they even don’t have to be expensive – but they are important and if we did plant one tree each [that’s over 4 million!!] can you imagine how beautiful the country would look. If where you live is ‘not as green as it should be’, if you want to give something a little not so expensive and don’t want to look like a cheap-skate or if you haven’t seen a bird in your garden since you moved in…. You could… and you really could, make a difference.

Go on plant a tree. And give it a hug after 😆 but of course!

i almost forgot….

this year i went to my *local* Christmas tree farm and picked out my very own tree. It was the first time I’d had a tree in my house as usually I’m away or not around at this time of year.

Anyway… I had no star for my tree, so I asked my niece Lilly if she would mind doing me the honour and making one for me [because as all adults know a made one is better than a bought one, right 😉 ] Lilly and Christopher [lillys younger brother], dropped by and i promised I would give them a mention here, to officially thank them both 🙂 isn’t life just brilliant!

christopher and lilly

christopher and lilly