The Ranunculaceae are a genus of more than 200 species of evergreen and deciduous mix of [not always but generally speaking] climbing plants, as one would generally know them.

In that context and to the climbing plants side of this family – some of these flowering beauties can reach upwards of 50′ in height, an error [?] in plant  you do not wish to make. They are generally self climbing and renowned for their almost wrap around corkscrew like self clinging attachments which it then uses to surge itself upwards.

The key to buying any climber, in this case clematis, is to suit the plant to the place. Mistakes in this department can often made in the early days for the sake of maybe saving a few euro’s. In my youth, the varieties most common were the Clematis montana – that can grow easily to 46′ long and therefore creates a very woody base, powering over and smothering almost anything that may have been planted nearby including trees, building and shrubs!

To this, I am offering you 6 clematis that are so much easier to care for and also that litte bit prettier. I have chosen these as, at this moment in time, it’s almost October and they are still in flower.

  • Clematis durandii – a late flowering, not self supporting clematis. It can grow to 6′ tall and its blue flowers with yellow anthers can grow to 3″ wide.
  • Clematis rouge cardinal – this rouge coloured late flowering clematis will self support and can grow to 10′ tall. Its flowers can grow to 4″ wide.

  • Clematis Mrs George Jackman – this one, I love. It flowers in early to mid and then again in late summer . The white flowers can grow to 6″ wide. Self clinging.
  • Clematis Nelly Moser – same as above, it is a self clinging double flowerer – It can grow to 10′ tall and its pink and white striped flowers can grow to 6″ wide.

  • Clematis proteus – this double flowering clematis can grow to 10′ tall and its flowers to 6″ wide. The second batch of flowers differing in colour by just a touch.
  • Clematis jackmanii – a single late flowering self climbing. it can grow to 10′ tall and its dark velvet flowers can grow to 4″ wide.

Some choose to plant on trellice. I personally wouldn’t. the problem is that the foliage canopy prevents moisture evaporating but allows it in and the wood quite quickly rots and falls apart. I prefer to use a strong timber support and galvanised wire. It means essentially it’s a one off installation and the wire does not rot or rust. Perfection.

Go forth. Buy. Consider. Enjoy!



Pronounced Nip-hof-e-a [I like the k in as a almost semi silent] Famed commonly as the red hot poker, in the more common varieties it is easy to see why it picked up the name. But not all can be labelled as such ie. by their appearance. These plants of the Asphodelaceae/ liliaceae are a genus of about 70 species and are also commonly called the torch lilly – seems to make a lot more sense to me when you look around….?

They can be considered perennials, evergreen or deciduous. Bet you not everyone knew that ? But generally, they are a clump forming plant used more often in herbaceous borders. That said, it not always how I have chosen to use them.

They are a hardy enough plant that can grow up to 6′ tall – I’ve rarely seen that – and tend to die back in the winter months. In this they can look a little unsightly

The yellow variety is Kniphofia Bees Lemon. It can grow to 3′ tall and 2′ wide. It flowers late summer to autumn. Better looking than the one above…?

I particularly like the kniphofia for the fact that they can be propagated by division. It’s pretty much plants for free if you get the right variety. Personally I don’t like the ‘red hot poker’ I much prefer the ‘torch lilly’ – does that make sense ? And I am not one generally for using the non-botanical names.

If you are thinking of buying some plants to touch up the garden, these are a great investment. You’ll have free cut flowers and free plants to swap or give away once you get past the first season.

It is October, almost, watering is not really something you will need to worry about – make life easy on yourself and the plant you are investing in, buy some of these guys, get one of the odd[er] varieties if you can and brighten up your days for next season. You’ll thank me for it, I promise! Go forth and start planting.

Apparently Autumn and Winter [and spring of coursre] are the quietest time in the gardeners calender…. not likely. Not if you are extremely wise 😉

Audioboo Deep Dive @ The Dot Conf

bernie, mark and myself

image courtesy brian greene

For those who don’t know what the dotconf was – this post on the dot conf may explain better.

But, it is not until after the hindsight has kicked in that one really realises just how and what audioboo has helped. This was kicked off by Bernie, via podcast of course.

I followed Bernie’s path with my thoughts on podcasting and in particular audioboo as my tool of choice.

So what can you take from this? A good start, from a gardeners perspective, can be made by taking a trip over to and after that it’s up to you whether you choose to add to the conversation or simply listen. Either or one cannot disagree that the listening to alone is giving radio, maybe of a different format, an entirely fresh and most welcome new lease of life.


Of course it would not have been possible without the people behind the scenes….

Personally, I like this little chat of a podcast that was recorded just after Bernie, Mark and myself had completed our deep dive audioboo sessions. On top of the National College of Ireland. 🙂

Still unsure… my numbers below, the coffee pot is on or you can send me an email or leave a comment below 😉

For me personally, I just find it amazing that an entire post is put together by seperate audio clips, taken over varying days that join together and make complete one blog post. Could I have done this one year ago ? Possibly….

Update: I really like Emilys take on the dot conf

The Battle Of The Boyne Site


The Battle Of The Boyne Site was visited by The Garden Group yesterday Sunday 27th June.

For a group that is entirely run free gratis yesterday would not have been possible without the help of Aisling Mc Mahon of the OPW and her team who gave us a personal guided tour of the grounds and access to areas that are not as yet open to the public.

The place is absolutely brimmed with history. That aside, from a personal point of view, as having restored and designed 17th and 18th century landscapes, to see the before and then the end result after landscape restoration is simply amazing. I know I am not alone when I say I will return to this place.

There is so much more there than just history to see and do here. It’s also free as long as you don’t do the guided tour of the house. Which you should. The landscape is simply breath taking. Two displays were taking place while we were there. The coffee shop is a must…. the list goes on. Go. Visit. Enjoy. Wander in the long grass.

More Details at the Battle of The Boyne Website

View more of my Battle of The Boyne Images

Looking for more information:

I really enjoyed Sarah’s images of the Boyne Battle site trip – baffles me how she took this picture from the boyne site visit 😉 genius.

George has great [curious] images of the Boyne Site Trip.

John Williams as always, took these great shots of the boyne site tour. Keep an eye on his personal weblog. You wouldn’t know what boyne site gems he could pull out of the bag.

Check out these images of the Boyne Visit. Jennifer posted the rest of her [as always genius] images of the boyne day. Some bits in there a lot of us missed. Makes me wanna go back and stay longer 😉

Battle of The Boyne Site Visit & The Garden Group

To those attending there is of course the original garden group guide post to this trip to the battle of the boyne site.

A note of thanks and deserved applause to Nick Reilly and Aisling Mc Mahon [OPW]  and also to you who decided to make this your Sunday day out.

Really looking forward to this. 🙂


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