What a strange feeling, to be wearing a t-shirt at the very end of September in the west of Ireland. I ate a strawberry straight from the plant the other day. All sorts of flowers are blooming… again. I’m enjoying the weather and wouldn’t complain about it. But somehow it just feels wrong. I’m sure it will rectify itself within a few weeks, then we’ll all be complaining about the cold and the rain.


Queen of the autumn, Rudbeckia lacianata ‘Sonnenblum’

I’ve been busy at home trying to tidy up the place a bit. My garden club friends came over last Saturday and we got a good bit done. The side of the house is getting a complete overhaul. Posts and windbreak had to be taken down. The windbreak was supposed to keep the chickens out (that didn’t work) and the only role the windbreak played was to shelter weeds. So out it came (thank you, Bridgette). Group effort moved the very heavy scaffolding board bed that I thought would be a good idea (it was not because it looked crap by the house and sat wonky on the ground). So out it went to be used as a bed for raspberries (that’s a whole other story for later). My French friend very nicely turned my compost heap for me in order to make use of the new extension. Now I have room to move compost back and forth to aerate it, plus have a bay that I can constantly add to. All in all, I was very happy with what we got done. Best of all were Caroline’s peanut butter cookies afterwards.


Stalwart of the autumn garden, one of the best Asters ever and he is named ‘Monch’

The Big Garden will be host to a car boot sale this coming Sunday. Actually, it will be held down at the stables. It’s the first time something like this has been done there. It will hopefully draw the local crowd and should be a bit of fun. There will be tea and coffee, a barbecue, plants for sale, homemade baked goods and jam, and all sorts of junk. It’s on from 11-3, 6 October if anyone nearby reads this.

Butterfly on Verbena

Cabbage white butterfly on Verbena bonariensis

Garden work at the Big Garden over the past couple of weekends has been bulb planting. The lady of the house just bought me a couple more Sedum ‘Matrona’ plants and 2 shrubs (Caryopteris and Perovskia). Just as a side note, I actually grew Perovskia from seed and it was surprisingly easy. Three years later and it is full grown. It makes a fabulous substitute for lavendar, which can be very unhappy in the Irish climate and conditions. A Perovskia walk doesn’t have quite the same ring as a lavendar walk, but at least you’d have lovely living plants, instead of poor sad things limping along.


When Nasturtium go bad, prisoners of Cell Block H

I feel as though I’m rambling, so that’s probably enough for now. Must get out there now and enjoy the weather… oops, I think it has started to rain…

Next time… willow wattle and tales of the triangle bed.