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gentlemen? time to stand up & be counted

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I took the DART into Dublin City recently. Been a while since I have. On the BUS home I took this picture and thought it would be a great poster to be put on all DART trains.

Reared with 4 sisters [& 3 brothers] I don’t wish to suggest a ‘National Peter Day’ of celebration but I feel compelled to say something.

I must have been one of very [very] few to stand and let a lady sit [age irrelevant] on a morning journey. The coach was full. One girl fainted a few seats down and still ended sat [slightly squashed] beside two ‘gentlemen’ who hunched hesitantly a little tighter on their seat whilst other people sat and read their newspaper. Two ladies did assist with water and such – agus bualadh bos – I applaud you.

More carriages – for sure. But it does not change the manner[ism]s of some who push and shove impolitely through their life. Is chivalry a characteristic of Irish history? Do we not perform random act of kindness at all? Or should we still blame Iarnród Éireann.

Maybe I just love going to work [incorrect by definition possibly hobby?!] and I’m slightly disillusioned believing it’s always great to see a smile….?

going green – is it a waste?

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I made a conscious decision some time ago that if the earth, landscaping to be precise, was my work then I as best as possible and the donegan landscaping team should work to a little more for the earth. It sounds like a fair deal and it is. It wasn’t that I/we did nothing green from the outset, but more a company strategy of sorts needed to be put into practice to create an ethos that could be improved upon.

When selecting trees out of season we try [it’s not always possible] to use trees from ‘air grown pots’ [like the ones above] as they’re reusable.

The green waste from garden is, naturally, recycled. The large wood heats the office and the softer, smaller wood goes to mulch.

When we buy compost and bark that we cannot generate ourselves it comes from recycled materials – rather than from bogs.

When we do, we also only use mulching mowers – a big carbon saver!

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One would assume it stops there…. ? There is the usual recycling of cloth material, electric appliances, glass, cans and also when shopping giving back all packaging; energy saving bulbs and a very well insulated building; we also located ourselves within a four mile radius of four main suppliers – more than that? the coffee grinds, tea bags and fruit peels etc. go to the green waste heap.

To reduce paper we recycle envelopes; we’re decommissioning our facsimile machine and moving to emailing company documents; waste paper is also turned over & used for note paper and then made into a máche type fire log to heat the office via our wood stove.

We buy Irish products, locally when possible – I know that’s got something to do with carbon footprints somewhere.

Is there more I/ we do? Is there more we can do? Since starting almost eight years ago now we kind of figured through our monthly meetings ourselves to this point – surely we can do a little more?! can we?

sponsor a show garden… ?

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This was Bloom 2007 and my show garden [and design] ‘No Rubber – Soul’. A roaring success one could say but… built without any sponsorship – madness most some could say!

The question is would you sponsor a garden….. ?

save a tree… recycle an envelope

I was looking at ways of making office life a little ‘greener’ recently and one monthly meet suggestion was to recycle our envelopes. A Forais na Gaeilge translation later, being that we are Barr 50 and we [sara] came up with this green – irish sticker.

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At present we heat the office from recycled timber and compressed paper, mulch our coffee grinds and tea bags etc… as much as we can [another blog required I think…]. But is this something more of us should be doing more of ??

Next on the list is decomissioning that darned facsimile machine!

Hands…

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… but today we return from our summer holidays and after a fine rest it is a delightful welcome I give to our beloved Irish weather, another no doubt amazing horticultural calender year and to a trade I dearly love. Whatever your plans these coming seasons – enjoy.

Happy Horticulture 2008!

peter