Irish Water. Free ?

Been harping on about this for a while now. This is that water butt post.

The Irish Times say water charges will raise €1 billion. Aparently, there have been campaigns over this…. [?] Some ask if water charges are the cure for water shortages. Estimates say it could cost householders around €400 per annum.

Daylight robbery makes its return. Might I suggest the government encourage conservation, conversation and education ? No? Why? Well, it seems the tax revenue is required.


image courtesy and very aptly titled biblical rain.

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The Weekend Gardeners Podcast

sodshow, garden podcast

The Sodshow Garden Podcast – every Friday – in iTunes, all good podcast stores.

Get the garden podcast in MP3 or – as always you can rss the podcasts via iTunes or subscribe to the blog and listen to them right here. Missed last weeks garden podcast ?

Links From the blog:

Images from my Garden:

Nice Stories:

Dates I Like

Something Completely Different:

I got a text from my good friend Eugene Higgins, during the Greece v Argentina game. Asking what I was I doing playing a match on television. Apparently I look like Alexandros Tzorvas, their goalkeeper 😯 Darren always said I looked like Alex Kapranos from Franz Ferdinand

And finally courtesy of Adland Ireland :

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Chives – Allium schoenoprasum


A bit like the sorrel plant, in the sense that this is another one of those just plant it and your pretty much sorted for life in this department. A member of the Allium or Onion [alliaceae/ lillaceae] family – the same family that gave you wild garlic, the supermarket garlic bulb and these really beautiful bulbs.

I got a wee clump from a riend of mine some time ago and they have just multiplied themselves over the years. Some recommend that they are grown from seed – and whilst I have done that this season – my recommendation is that you pop your head over your neighbours wall and ask them for a clump. Lift he clump up and like knotted hairjust rip a section out of it and replant.

When I have too much I pop them in the freezer just after harvesting. As a by the way it doesn’t matter if they are flowering or not from your salad point of view. That said from a get the most out of the plant perspective I prefer they don’t go into flower. Mainly as I want the plants energy to go into producing green leaves rather than seed.

Noted as being a bulbous perennial with short rhizomes grown for its edible, cylindrical, hollow dark green leaves that can grow up to 14″ long. Its umbels can be up to 1″ wide whilst its flowers can grow up to 30 bell shaped purple flowers. The plant itself can grow up 24″ tall and 2″ wide.

Basil – Ocimum basilicum


The Ocimum [labiatae/ lamiaceae] are a genus of about 365 species of aromatic annuals and evergreen herbs. But – this is not lavender we are discussing. This is the herb we know as basil. With that in mind I am only interested in one type.

There are other varieties, but I have chose what I regard a the more common basil [to me] or what is know commercially as sweet basil. It is an annual and therefore completes its life cycle in one season.

Either or the entire of the ocimum basilicum’s are renowned as either short lived perennials or annuals. They are tender little things that, horticulture aside most people have very little, or less luck with. Any deviation from that truth and your pants are on fire or you work for NASA – and yes they can hear you. Back to the herbs…

For me, I prefer to grow mine from seed and there literally is no major secret [there is of course 😉 ] to doing so. Simply fill a jam jar with compost. Firm slightly and place on the kitchen window ledge. Add a little patience and play the waiting game. Some say, sow them in rediculous rows 8″ apart – but I like to scatter a few across the top and stuff the rule book. Its more fun as well.

The scent from them is amazing. I chose not to feed them either. Its just me and food crops. And if I end up with too much from cropping…. I freeze them to get me through the winter. Next year, I’ll start all over again. As a btw, you should get about 300 seeds in a pack… use what you must and put the rest [in the packet] in the freezer.

supporting trees…

seamus enns...

seamus ennis...

you might be wondering why the Seamús Ennis centre is in a gardening  article?

Apart from is being an amazing place… It is the tree support in the background of this photograph that it is here.

Rather than chop the arms off a fine and well represented  tree in the beautiful village of the Naul… someone, I assume Fingal County Council decided to come up with the logic of giving it a helping hand.

I thought it a great idea and more than deserved of a mention. I haven’t seen a tree ‘staff’/ support used since I was 22/23 years old and over the grounds of Dublin City University… [10 years ago now…].

The building is beautiful with it thatched roof and honestly, cutting off the limb of this tree would enhance the structure less than more… If you are out for a Sunday cycle why not drop by, take a look and let me know what you think? enjoy 🙂

tree-supports seamus ennis centre naultree-support-street-planting seamus ennis centretree-supports-street naul co.dublin