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2023 Gardening Thread



  • Registered Users Posts: 28,184 ✭✭✭✭looksee

    I'd leave them be, I find heather temperamental but if they take they fly. Some of them will probably die, replace them. If you get more dying than living it may be that your site is not suitable for whatever reason. They tend not to do much in the first two seasons then really get going. I'd put some bark mulch on there. Its a fairly steep slope so it may slip but persevere, eventually it will stay where you put it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,324 ✭✭✭mojesius

    Thanks @looksee. Yeah I'm leaving them be. Silly question (I'm a novice gardener) but how would the bark mulch help there? Would it not all gradually slide down the bank?

    It's a very steep bank. We have to get someone in to look at a corner in it as it's starting to crack so not planting anything near there until we get that sorted.

    Do you think it's worth planting more heather on a less steep side in autumn (currently bare and doing my head in with weeds) or should we wait a year to see if the current batch takes where it's planted? Thanks

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,184 ✭✭✭✭looksee

    Its always difficult to tell how steep a slope is in a photograph, and I agree it might just slip down. I have wood chip on a sloping bed and it stays there fine, though I think it is not as steep as yours. Certainly the very top of the bank there is very steep. Why not try some in a strip and see how it goes, if it will stay in place it is excellent for improving the soil and helping to keep down weeds (it won't eliminate them, but it does help).

    By the autumn you should have a good idea whether the present lot are going to survive, even if they have not grown much, and you might get different results in a different bed, I'd say it would be worth a try.

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,184 ✭✭✭✭looksee

    Its worth mentioning that you should know what kind of soil you have. If it is acid you are good for (very generally speaking) summer flowering heather, if it tends more to alkaline then you will be ok for winter flowering but the summer flowering heathers are not likely to do much. Either way they like a lot of organic matter, which is why the wood chip helps, it rots down while helping keep down weeds and preserving moisture.

    You can get an idea of what kind of soil you have by the weeds that grow naturally, but its easy to be fooled by this - nettles and dandelions like acid soil but they will grow in other soils. A soil test will help, just remember to test original soil not any that has been brought in, and if it is recently ex-farm land it may have been limed. If you are living in uplands that grow foxgloves readily then you likely have acid soil.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 48,619 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    re the courgettes; my wife was in mr middleton today and was told they're having trouble sourcing courgette, chilli and squash plants this year, because of a cold start. loads of tomato plants available, though?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,130 ✭✭✭wildwillow

    Loads of courgettes at a plant swap in Kildare yesterday.

  • Registered Users Posts: 115 ✭✭InsideEdge

    No courgettes in Newlands garden centre last Friday but there were lots of cucumbers!

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,298 ✭✭✭Deub

    I went to another garden centre and no courgettes to be seen. Hopefully, the seed I bought will come up.

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,077 ✭✭✭✭Igotadose

    Weird thing about the courgettes. i just gave away 8 starts, had too many, kept 6. Should do fine bar the usual weather unpredicabilty, wiped me out late last may, fortunately could find some starts.

    And again, the Kuri squash I grew last year, which included some with solid yellow leaves, are started and actually doing better than the courgettes. But at least one looks like it'll have yellow leaves.

    FWIW, the yellow-leafed one I left alone, did fine. Plenty of large, delicious fruit. All these are from an original bought a few years ago from Supervalue. No idea about the sourcing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,428 ✭✭✭MacDanger

    I have a few carrots from last year still in the ground (I know, probably not good from a carrot fly point of view but I've neglected the garden a bit this year) which are starting to go to seed - is it worth letting them go to seed and try collecting it? Or just pull them now?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,077 ✭✭✭✭Igotadose

    Is there anything special about that carrot variety? Because if not, I'd pull them and feed them to the neighbourhood donkeys/horses/w.h.y. (ask the owners first though.) Carrot seeds are readily available at nurseries and I find space in the garden is always at a premium, so I only save seeds for things I can't get the seeds from again, like a kale variety someone gave me years ago that does very well but I haven't found it online, at least, not one that matches it exactly.

    More on saving carrots from seed:

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,077 ✭✭✭markc1184

    Apologies if this is not the correct thread to ask this in but hoping someone can help.

    I had a new lawn laid last Friday, roll out turf. I've been watering it for between 2 and 3 hours each day since, but the gaps between the sods just keeping getting bigger. I know the heat is not helping the issue and the sun is always on my front lawn. Is this something I should be worried about or is there anything I can do differently to help things?

    If the gaps remain, what can I do to get rid of those down the line?

    Many thanks

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,184 ✭✭✭✭looksee

    Put some compost/John Innes into the gaps, it will help prevent them drying out (a bit) eventually they will grow over and you won't know they were there.

  • Registered Users Posts: 33,173 ✭✭✭✭NIMAN

    Saw a sight today for the 1st time, well kinda 2nd.

    I was in kitchen and heard what I initially thought was a engine in the distance. Then got louder and looked out back of house to see a massive swarm of bees heading towards the house. Really loud.

    Since all windows were open upstairs and downstairs, there was a mad panic to get them closed. By the time that was done, they were well past.

    It would have been great to watch, had I not been in such a panic!

    Last summer a swarm stopped off in a tree in my front garden, and a local beekeeper came and moved them. But this was on a different level of scale. And saw them on the move.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,556 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    I'm currently waiting on a swarm to take up residence in a bait box. Loads of scouts but not the main swarm.

  • Registered Users Posts: 33,173 ✭✭✭✭NIMAN

    You keep bees?

    Always thought it would be interesting, after I had a chat with the guy last summer who took away the other swarm.

    I'd have room to have a few hives too, if I ever got the notion.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,556 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    Do a course with your local club and then decide. It's not for a poor man (initially anyway) or indeed for the faint hearted. Having 10,000 bees buzzing around you with only a suit to protect you. 🤕

  • Registered Users Posts: 33,173 ✭✭✭✭NIMAN

    Yeah that's true...perhaps I should have said notion, and nerve!

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,077 ✭✭✭✭Igotadose

    I've looked at it in the past, and it's really a big commitment of time, and space. 30,000 bees across a few hives isn't unusual, and you definitely don't want to annoy the neighbours. Plus, it's fairly time consuming at times of year when you might not want to be at home, i.e., nice weather.

    If you can manage it, it's all good, nothing like honey fresh from the hive, and the bees might help pollinate your garden, or someone else's garden too as they range pretty far. But, it's a commitment.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,130 ✭✭✭wildwillow

    Visited Ardan Garden in Howth recently. It is on the Dublin garden trail and open Sat and Sun during summer. Best to book and try to join a tour.

    It is absolutely worth a visit, came away speechless. Lovely husband and wife team who are so generous with their information.

    I will visit again before season closes.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 859 ✭✭✭SnowyMuckish

    The first reprieve from the incessant deluge in what seems like an eternity, taking advantage of the short break to actually sit in the garden for the first time in an age. Nice to see the place buzzing a bit with life. Wild marjoram a clear front runner in attracting the pollinators, nothing else even close to it at the moment!

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,396 ✭✭✭macraignil

    Posted another video a couple of days back showing how my garden is progressing here in north county Cork with a good few pollinators about. Viper's bugloss, buddleia and herb robert among the pollinator's favourites with the oregano that I know they like still not after coming into bloom properly. As well as some flowers there are some of this years vegetables on show including the first year I have tried a version of the three sisters polyculture technique with Corn, Squash and peas instead of a bean variety growing in the same plot. Jeff the dog here was after fetching his bone a couple of times before I recorded the clip and ads his own sound effects.

    Happy gardening!

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,077 ✭✭✭✭Igotadose

    Grew corn 2 years ago here (west Kerry.) It grew, it yielded a few decent cobs but overall it wasn't really hot enough and it was too windy to get decent yield. There were a lot of unpollinated kernels. Corn's wind pollinated which is why you need to plant it fairly densely, like 1 stalk every 16 inches. I actually went out and pollinated by hand when there were tassles with pollen on the plants, not sure if it helped or not.

    Squash should grow as well as peas. Never had any success with beans but others do, though I think in polytunnels, I don't have one.

    Currently visiting the Pacific Northwest in the US on holiday... The corn... Fabulous. Huge, sweet, relatively inexpensive. We're eating it with every other dinner. But, it's hot here and pretty dry.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,556 ✭✭✭SouthWesterly

    Garden is suffering this year.

    Having to take up the last of my main crop spuds this week due to blight. They are a month early

    Tomatoes in the tunnel also got blight and I'll be picking green tomatoes tomorrow.

    Onions were a wipeout practically with the wet weather.

    Corn is blown over with the wind and rain

    Brassicas doing well and will have some root vegetables.

    Altogether a depressing season.

  • Registered Users Posts: 859 ✭✭✭SnowyMuckish

    Definitely suffering in this garden, everything is a sodden rotten mess, gone over long ago and not being able to get out to it to clear it. Just wilted brown slop everywhere, going to try to get out mon/ tue as they seem to be dry days hopefully.