About Mominthegarden

I'm an American enjoying life in Ireland. I live in the country with my family. It is so beautiful here! I've been creating our garden from "scratch" and having fun doing it! I blog about my gardening adventures, and a bit about Ireland, too.

A look back on the garden – Part II

Hello! I’ve had quite a time going through my photos from 2021 – there are a lot! Every season brings something different and interesting, so I can’t even say which is my favorite season. They are all wonderful in their own way. But in this post, we’ll look at the garden from April through June. As you can imagine, that’s a pretty busy time in the garden. Some of what you’ll see: Tulips, Allium, Bluebells, Lily of the valley, apple and cherry blossoms, and Roses – lots and lots of Roses! I hope you enjoy the tour. πŸ™‚

April collage of apple blossoms, cherry blossoms, anemone and magnolia

April is definitely a time when we start to see a lot more happening in the garden. We enjoy seeing the two varieties of apple tree blossoms – one has very light pink flowers, while the other has bright pink flowers. Our cherry tree blossoms are also light pink, and start to show at this time. The Anemones have been going all winter and continue to bring a pop of purple color to the garden. I have a picture of the green leaves from one of my peony plants here, too: Paeonia ‘Hillary’ is an Itoh (hybrid). I think the green leaves are lovely. I guess I have a thing for ‘greens’ because I also have a picture of my Nootka Cypress ‘Pendula’ simply because it is one of my favorite trees.

April collage of tulips

I had to have a tulip block! I love tulips, with a special fondness for pinks. These pictures are all from April. I have to say that I planted a bunch more this past fall, so we’ll see how they do in a few months!

April collage of frosty grass, bleeding heart, bergenia, hyacinth, magnolia, grape hyacinth and hellebores

We’re still in April! Just a reminder, as shown in the photo with the birch trees and the hen house, that we can still get a hard frost (in May, too, unfortunately). As for flowers, in April we have Bleeding Hearts, white and pink varieties of Bergenia, Grape Hyacinth, Hyacinth, and Hellebores. The ‘heaven scent’ Magnolia tree and the Birch trees were planted at the same time in November 2020. While I confess that I didn’t really notice a strong scent, I found the Magnolia flowers to be quite pretty.

May collage of hosta, tulips, lilacs, cherry blossoms

Moving along to May, we are still enjoying tulips. Other bloomers at this time: Lily of the valley, Columbine (or Aquilegia), lilacs, fully blooming cherry blossoms, and Erysimum ‘super bowl’ mauve. The Hosta were moved from the ground into planters this year, to decorate the new garden. They started to fill out in May. The plants in the veggie beds and the sunflower bed are all doing well and showing lots of growth. The Globe Artichoke plant, behind the mauve Erysimum plant, is one of my favorites for the unusual leaves and of course the artichokes, which flower purple when left to fully mature. I grow it because I think it is so interesting to look at!

May collage of blue bells, garlic, rosemary, lilacs and potted plants

Although still in May, the organic plant based food ‘Nature Safe’, which I use throughout the garden, would have been taken out in March to start feeding my evergreens, and the lilac shrubs. I really like this product, plain and simple. It took me too long to learn that feeding your plants regularly is *really* important. Some more blooms in the garden: Bluebells, Rosemary (did you know it flowers?) and lilacs. At this time, everything I’ve grown from seed gets acclimated to get ready for the move to outdoors. Here’s a look at how the garlic is doing, too.

May collage of flowers with lilacs, lily of the valley, poppy, pumpkin, peony and allium

Still in May! The lilacs have finally opened completely, while the Viburnum Opulus ‘Roseum’ is just coming into bloom – it starts out green and will eventually turn white. The first of my peony, an old fashioned variety, also starts to bloom (it is a deep red) and looks quite nice among the Bluebells. Tis the season for Allium, and Poppies. These orange ones, like all of the Poppies in my yard, were not planted by me. They were either planted by a bird, or more likely, by my compost. The pumpkin plants are planted in the ground and showing signs of wind burn (but they mostly survived this). The Bearded Iris were planted in the bed of the Birch trees in November, and I just wasn’t sure if they would survive. But they sure did survive! Here one is getting ready to bloom.

May project of Pumpkin arch

Our ‘Pumpkin Arch’ project was done in June. My husband made it for me based on a few requirements I had. He really did a great job and it is my favorite feature in the garden. We planted pumpkins and squash at the base of it, and that worked out really well. They didn’t reach the top of the arch this year, though, so I’d like to plant them earlier in the season. I plan to also cover the young plants with fleece to protect them from windburn (our area is really windy) and from frost. Maybe then they’ll reach the top of the arch!

June collage of iris, roses, strawberries, pumpkins & lupin

June! The sunflowers are getting taller, the strawberries are ripening, the pumpkin plants are finally settling in to the soil and producing flowers. The lupins looked exceptionally fantastic this year. I didn’t do anything differently, so hopefully they’ll be as lovely again this year. I have three different varieties of iris in the collage above, but I only know the bearded iris name: Benton Storrington. And since this is early June, the black spot hasn’t gotten hold of the rose shrubs (yet).

June collage of roses and peony

The roses really take over the show in June, but they aren’t alone as also showing off in the best kind of way are the different varieties of peony plants that I have. Last year wasn’t the best year for my peony plants (some had been moved early in the season). I’m hoping they’ll be happier this year.

My oh my that’s a lot of flowers and plants in the garden! I made it a goal to work for a short time in the garden every morning before work. I have to say that doing that small bit (nearly) every morning made my life so much easier in the garden. I was able to stay on top of weeding – mostly – and I was able to enjoy working in the garden since it was just a short amount of time. I might not get out in the garden every day, but I do try and do small bits here and there to keep the weeds in check.

Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed the tour. Until next time, stay safe and healthy!

In Peace,
Dana

June 5, 2021 sunset in new garden
June 5, 2021 Sunset view from the garden

A look back on the garden, while planning ahead

Happy New Year! While life all around us is still rather unsettled with Covid-19 (the Omicron variant being the latest cause of widespread infection), there is one thing that, thankfully, remains a constant: the garden. January is the perfect time to look back over what we grew in the garden last year. I like to reflect on what did well, what didn’t, and think about what we want to add. I’ll do this in four parts, using a collage of pictures. Shall we get started? πŸ™‚

January snow on snowdrops, chickens and the playhouse with a picture of the compost, too.

We had a light dusting of snow last January, which made everything quite pretty. The snowdrops are usually the first to flower. I’ve just checked today on the snowdrops and they have pushed through the soil, so it shouldn’t be long now before they bloom again! Also early to flower are these ‘Winter Sunshine’ hellebores. This plant in particular flowers profusely all winter long, and when the leaves aren’t suffering from black spot, the leaves are a very pretty blue-green (I cut them off if they have black spot, and the plant does fine). I took a picture of our compost heap because it really is amazing stuff, despite its messy look. As for my Rhode Island Red (hybrid) chickens, I can never resist taking pictures of the girls’ fluffy bums!

February collage of pictures, including a snowman, cookies, seed packets, a hellebore and chickens.

We had (just) enough snow in February to make a snowman! My daughters and I had a fun time in the snow. I’m so thankful that they have a silly side and that they want to include me in their fun! We also did some baking – dark chocolate is our favorite to bake with. As for the garden, a couple more of our hellebore plants started to flower. The single hellebore flower is Anemone Picotee, while the more showy hellebore is Frilly Isabelle. Funny enough, not all of my hellebores flowered last year. I know that last year I cut their leaves late in the season, so I didn’t do that this year. (I’m not sure that would do it, but worth a shot.) The birch trees were only planted in November of 2020, so I took a lot of pictures of them. You can just barely see the bearded iris stumps at the bottom of the trees, the first plants I added to the birch tree bed. The chickens weren’t sure what to make of the snow, but thankfully, it wasn’t around for long. This was also the time my seeds arrived, which is always a time of excitement. πŸ™‚

February collage of pictures of hellebores, snow drops and cupcakes

A few more pictures from February, as I added a couple new hellebore plants underneath the birch trees: Harvington Double Apricots and Harvington Double Reds, both of which came from Altamont Gardens, in County Carlow. They are both very frilly and showy, making them just perfect. The snowdrops also opened up nicely, which can really be appreciated on a sunny day. I don’t have the name of my pink hellebore, but it is a ‘single’ and very pretty. We did some more baking in February, too!

March collage of pictures of anemone, hellebores, daffodils, and compost.

Moving right along to March, I’ve captured here the single pink anemone that I have. It is quite a bright pink color, while all of the rest of the anemone in my yard – and there are a lot – are purple. The end of February / beginning of March is when I gave my rose shrubs a hard prune. That worked out great this year, as the roses did really well. I am slowly learning that to prune more is better than to prune less with my roses. The Pulmonaria flower, in the middle, blooms along with the daffodils, and is a nice companion plant to them. This variety (whose name I don’t know) also has pretty spotted leaves. I so enjoy having chickens and getting fresh eggs every day! They are such a treat. Not to be outdone by the chickens, Kitty enjoys being in the garden with me. While I do take lots of pictures of her, you can also find her photobombing her share of pictures. And we have another picture of our compost! The compost benefits from being ‘turned’, the more the better. But even if it is just left over the winter (sorry to say that this happens a lot with us!), the bottom of the heap will be good to use by the summer.

March collage of pictures of tulips, daffodils, magnolia, hyacinth, ranunculus, and seed trays.

March (and creeping into the start of April) brings more color into the garden, with ranunculus, tulips, daffodils, hyacinth, anemone, bergenia (this one is a white variety) and our magnolia tree in bloom. The Aubrieta definitely steals the show in the rose bed at this time of year. That pink ‘pops’ from clear across the yard. My plan was for it to grow over and down the wall. Its plan is to grow into the garden! I’m hoping my plan wins. Last March is also when I started some flowers in seed trays. This was the first year I tried this, and overall it went well. The coleus and delphinium were the biggest successes, or at least my favorite.

collage of a baby blanket with farm animals

I was a little busy with this creative project, too, last March. It’s kind of fun to look back on what kept me busy! It actually took about 6 weeks to make this baby blanket. It was a fun project that I was very pleased with. But I haven’t really worked on any crocheting since, which means it’s about time to start again!

I skipped our biggest project which we started last March: the cleaning up of the veggie/fruit garden and the addition of the pumpkin arch. I will definitely cover that in my next post.

Meanwhile, I hope you are staying healthy, and are having a good start to the new year!

In Peace,
Dana

P.S. The feature photo is from last year, we have not had snow this year (yet?).

The endurance run of 2021

It’s the end of 2021. I honestly don’t know how I feel. It was another year dominated by Covid-19, but at least this year we had the opportunity to get vaccinated. And although only in a limited capacity, we were able to travel and meet up with family and friends. But we all have grown tired of this seemingly never ending pandemic. This has truly been a test of endurance; keeping a positive attitude when times have been tough. I think it is important to acknowledge that it has not been easy and there have been frustrating times along the way – and it isn’t over yet. But I’m going to focus on the good times that we’ve had, the wonderful people in our lives, and the blessings we’ve experienced in the everyday. As far as the garden is concerned, it has thrived with the extra attention, while I have benefited from giving it the extra attention. The highlight has to be the addition of the pumpkin arch, and of course, the cleanup of that section of the garden. It was so worth the wait and the work!

While I originally wanted to go through a month by month show of the garden, I’ve decided that that will be a perfect ‘new year’ project! Stay tuned for that. For now, I simply want to wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year! Thank you so much for being a part of Mom in the Garden. I’m so thankful that you care to stop by to read about what is happening in the garden, for your ‘likes’, your kind words, and your follows. May 2022 be everything you hope it to be!

In Peace,
Dana

Let’s make 2022 a little less serious and a lot more fun! πŸ™‚

Merry Christmas to one and all!

It truly is the most wonderful time of the year! I love Christmas time. It is fun to transform our home with so many Christmas decorations (too many, perhaps?). I also do a lot of baking of Christmas cookies. I give most of them away to those dear to us, although I must say we have more than our share left over. It’s also a time I enjoy creating wreaths and table arrangements. This year I was able to do that with greens collected from our own yard, which is such a bonus! And don’t forget Christmas music. I honestly wait to start listening to Christmas music until two weeks before Christmas. I think it is worth waiting, so as not to get my fill too soon! But best of all, Christmas is when family and friends come together to enjoy each other’s company and to wish each other well for the year ahead. We are all filled with love and excitement (especially if there are littles about)! For those of us who are spiritual, we keep Jesus as the focus (or we do our best to). It is truly a celebration of love.

I wish you and your family a wonderful holiday season filled with love! I hope you all are safe and well and able to be with friends and family, either face to face or through Facetime or Zoom. May the magic of Christmas be with you!

In Peace,
Dana

Outdoor Christmas wreath with red ribbon
images from creating a Christmas wreath

This is a large wreath I made to hang outside our house. The wrought iron frame was made for me by a good friend, and it is just perfect! The big white snowflakes are decorations that I never used inside, but look really nice on the wreath. There is a definite musical theme, too. πŸ™‚

Christmas decorations of snowmen and santas and Christmas trees

Who doesn’t like collecting Snowmen and Santas? I’ve noticed that I also have quite a few small Christmas trees. The one on top, with small red bells was one I crocheted a few years ago. It might be time for a new crochet Christmas project!

Christmas decorations
Christmas decorations

I probably don’t need to add that I like quirky. But I do! It is great that I have enough ‘stuff’ to arrange things differently every year. I like to mix things up a bit, and make the kids go looking for their favorite items, instead of knowing where they’ll be.

table arrangement of greens

Sometimes, it gets a little chaotic. There never seems to be enough time to get everything done. But creating wreaths and table arrangements helps to calm me. It is something I love to do!

Christmas tree and decorations

I changed up our tree this year – no red! I chose some antique balls of blueish gray, and gold with silver. They are very special ornaments, so I’m happy to have them out on display.

Dana and cookies and Christmas tree

These are some of the cookies I baked this year. It is my favorite time of year to do marathon baking sessions! I’m grateful that my family enjoys eating them, too.

Thanks so much for joining me this Christmas! Merry Christmas!

A pink and purple theme

Hi there, and welcome to my blog! The mild fall weather absolutely spoiled me, allowing me to work comfortably in the garden for well into November. So when the weather turned ‘normal’ for this time of year, I was a teeny, tiny bit annoyed and withdrew inside. Thankfully, I’ve acclimatized, and have ventured out again – albeit with many layers. You’ll see what I mean about about a pink and purple theme when I show you what I gathered from the garden. πŸ™‚

collage of pink and purple flowers in a vase

Whoa! Look at those colors! So here we have it, my pink and purple flowers. The rose shrubs are more or less at the end of their season, and I saw no reason to leave the flowers outside where no one would be enjoying them (it’s too cold!). I added the anemone because now is when they actually start showing up all over the garden. They might appear to be a frail flower, but they do great in arrangements, as do roses, of course. The roses opened up over the course of the week and were truly lovely. The bottom left photo in the collage was taken a few days after I brought the flowers inside, while the others are from just a short time after cutting the flowers. Never mind that in the same room I had a fall colored arrangement for Thanksgiving. Yes, it clashed, and nope, I didn’t really care.

Pink and Purple bouquet

This picture shows the flowers after a few days being inside. They all opened up beautifully. It’s the simple things.

Pink and Blue sunrise

Look at that morning sky! We’ve seen lots of pink and purple hues of late. It’s just beautiful, and something I will never tire of. While I do love pink and purple, it’s now time to get into Christmas mode (and colors). We’ve just put up our outside Christmas lights, and that really helps to get everyone in the Christmas spirit!

I hope you are keeping safe, and well, and that your December is exactly what you need it to be.

In Peace,
Dana

lit Christmas tree outside with kitty
Kitty was helping me to check on the lights. πŸ™‚

Gardening thanks for ‘Six on Saturday’

Hello, and welcome to my blog! This week I’d like to take a moment to reflect on what I’m thankful for in relation to my garden. This seems appropriate now, as Thursday is Thanksgiving in America. I’m so glad that our family still celebrates Thanksgiving here in Ireland, although it has shifted to the weekend to accommodate everyone’s schedules. It is such a wonderful opportunity to be with family and give thanks for our blessings. For today’s post, I’ll be joining The Propagator’s meme ‘Six on Saturday’ as I show you what I’m thankful for in the garden.

Dana & PΓ‘raic in the garden

1 – My husband. πŸ™‚ I have to say that my husband has always supported me, and the garden is no exception. There was basically nothing in the yard when we moved here and he has helped me to create what we have today. All of the heavy lifting in the garden is done by him, as is a lot of the planting – and replanting, and without complaint! He also built the arch (above his head in the picture) for me this year, based solely on my request for an arch to hold pumpkins. I am very thankful for him!

Pumpkins and squash growing on arch

2 – Pumpkin arch. This was such a joy to work with this year! We really weren’t sure if it would hold the pumpkins, or if the pumpkins would hold up, but it sure did and they sure did. They grew about 2/3 the way up the arch, so I’m hoping to get them all the way up next year (of course!). The Red Kuri squash are a fabulous color to have in among the green Hokkaido squash and of course the orange pumpkins, although they are green for most of the growing season. The arch is actually four arches, along with fencing and stakes to secure everything. It was quite a job to create, but as I mentioned above, my husband did a great job.

New vegetable beds
The new beds filled with sunflowers, sweet peas and squash

3 – The new vegetable and flower bed area. This was another project that started as an idea in my head and came about with my husband’s hard work. I had learned a tremendous amount from the similar raised bed set-up which we previously had in this same spot. We decided to make a clean go of it and had the area totally dug out. Ah, a clean slate! We mapped things out based on what I like to grow. One of my favorite new things that we did this time around was to have thicker (eco-friendly) sleepers. They just look nicer. Also, the Hoggin, a compactable ground cover, has worked out great around the beds and I really like the way it looks. We’re not completely finished with this project, but hopefully we’ll get the last bits done over the coming year. I’m delighted with how well the sunflowers, sweet pea, and squash did here!

apple tree flowers
Apples, pears and blueberries

4 – Our fruit trees and shrubs. Is there anything nicer than home grown fruit? We have eating and cooking apples, pears and blueberries. We have a fig tree, too, but I’ll save judgement on that until we actually get to eat a fig. This year we managed to figure out a decent way to cover the blueberries, keeping the birds out for most of the season. I’m sure the birds were disappointed as they’ve enjoyed the blueberries over quite a few years! There are a few different varieties and I can say that the small blueberries are just as tasty as the great big ones. As for the pears, we had two delicious – and huge – pears this season. That is down from the start of the season when we had more than a dozen of them. I’ve had a tough time with this pear tree, unfortunately, but we’ll keep trying. Thankfully, the apples are very low maintenance and provide plenty of delicious apples for us to enjoy.

birch trees in different seasons

5 – Birch trees. This was a big decision on my part last year. In the past, I’ve done things in small, incremental ways. So the decision to have five tall trees planted here was challenging to me. But I am so thankful that I did it! The bark of the Birch trees is such a pretty color, and their tall structure is something the garden needed. This also gave me the opportunity to create another flower bed (you can never have enough flowers!). I have managed to have flowers blooming here throughout the entire year, from hellebores, to iris, poppies, rudbeckia and persicaria.

Chickens and eggs

6 – Chickens. Having chickens as pets is such a treat for me. It is something that I waited to do but it was definitely worth it. I’m glad that they have a large run and that they can hang out under the hedge, too (there is fencing in the hedge which should keep them safe). They are chatty and friendly and generally easy to manage. Oh, and of course they lay eggs!

There’s so much more to be thankful for! But I’ll stick to the ‘six’ for the meme. πŸ™‚ I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, if you celebrate it. As the Covid cases go up, and life gets a bit crazy again, I especially hope that you are doing well, and staying safe and healthy.

In Peace,
Dana

The show isn’t over yet! for ‘Six on Saturday’

Hi there, and welcome to my blog! The garden has not quite given up yet, despite it being mid November. We’ve been lucky with very mild weather, and a healthy serving of sunshine, too. This really makes a difference when getting the garden ready for winter. I raked leaves today because it was so still (a rare occurrence for us). How easy it is to pick up leaves when the wind isn’t blowing them all around! I’m still planting bulbs, too. I made the mistake of ordering and planting my fall bulbs timely this year. Which left me extra time to order more! I’m sure it’ll be lovely in the spring, but right now I’m wondering where I’m going to put them all! πŸ™‚

Never mind, I’m sure I’ll find someplace nice to plant them. In the meantime, I will be joining the Propagator for his meme ‘Six on Saturday’. Let’s see what I have this week to show you!

Blueberry leaves, Rowan berries, cherry tree leaves to form a flower

1 – Garden whimsy. I worked/played/hung-out in the garden most of today. It’s my happy place, so that’s a good thing. After I’d done a respectable amount of work, I decided to have some fun. I discovered *one* single sunflower bloom (it is really tiny) and decided to use it as a center piece of a flower. The beautiful crimson leaves are from my blueberry shrubs. They are just W.O.W.! I also had some berries from one of our Rowan trees, and some cherry tree leaves. There were much nicer cherry tree leaves, but I’d already raked them up earlier in the day, not realizing I was going to be playing with leaves later! Just a little bit of fun.

Fall vibes pic at playhouse with marigolds and pumpkins
Marigolds

2 – Marigolds. I don’t know the variety. I planted a bunch of seeds around the blueberries, but only a few seeds took. But boy did they take! I’ve never had such tall marigolds. I think them blooming late has worked out great. It’s nice to have a big splash of color now when the other plants have all finished their show. I cut a large bouquet of them and took some pictures in front of our playhouse. I still have the pumpkins, too, as I really like orange in the garden in November!

figs on a tree

3 – Ficus carica (Fruiting Fig tree). So we bought this lovely tree in 2019 and this year is the first we have fruit. Now, I’m not sure if the figs will mature enough to eat before the weather turns frosty. We’ll see!

Cliona and Buckbeak (chicken)

4 – My daughter and Buckbeak (a Bluebell chicken). Sometimes, it’s nice to take a break with the chickens! Buckbeak loves to interact with us. She’ll either jump onto our laps or if you are anyway bent over, she’ll jump on your shoulder/back and chat away to you. We find her to be very sweet, as is my daughter!

New birch trees sunset

5 – Birch trees. I had five birch trees planted last November. Unfortunately, two of them didn’t make it. So I’ve just had two replacement trees planted. We’re now back to five birch trees. This was the evening that they were planted. I went out to water them and was treated to a beautiful sunset. I was so glad that I had to go outside, or I might have missed it!

Fall garden view with playhouse

6 – November view of the vegetable garden. I just caught the lighting right for this picture. Shortly after I took this picture, the rains came and stayed for the entire day. My take away? Seize the moment!

Would it be too much if I hope that the weather remains mild? At least until I get the rest of my bulbs planted! Do take care of yourself.

In Peace,
Dana

A visit to Powerscourt House & Gardens for ‘Six on Saturday’

Hello, and welcome to my blog! I had the pleasure of visiting one of Ireland’s beautiful country estate gardens a few weeks ago. It was my first visit and I can assure you that I will be back again as it was simply a wonderful experience. It is no surprise that National Geographic Magazine has rated it one of the top 10 gardens in the world. I traveled with my friend Susan down to Enniskerry, County Wicklow. We made a day of it, topping it off with afternoon tea at the Powerscourt Hotel (located adjacent to the gardens). I’ve decided to share my reflections on the day as part of the ‘Six on Saturday’ meme as led by The Propagator. So let’s begin!

Powerscourt House & Gardens Italian Garden
Dana and Susan with Italian Garden and urns with geraniums

1 – The Italian Garden. I like the orderliness of the Italian garden. Everything is neatly in its place, with formal lines and symmetry. I find that peaceful (and funny enough, the opposite of my own garden). October 12th happened to be mostly sunny and mild, which was perfect weather for walking the gardens. I was a tiny bit obsessed with the geranium planters. Firstly I really liked the foliage of the geranium. Some of the urns had sweet cherubs, facing in to the plant. But with the plant overgrown, it quite looked like they were hiding their faces. Some of the urns had devil-like faces and always with horns (a symbol of strength). Very interesting to see these on innocent flower planters. We also enjoyed the views of the Sugar Loaf Mountain, as can be seen clearly from here. As a note of interest, the terraces were designed in the 1840s by architect Daniel Robertson, taking more than 12 years to build.

Japanese Garden at Powerscourt House and Garden
Japanese Garden at Powerscourt House and Gardens, Dana and Susan

2 – Japanese Garden. As far as our timing, we were probably a couple of weeks out from peak foliage coloring. But we thoroughly enjoyed seeing the trees as they were in their transition state. The Japanese garden, created in 1908, has lovely, sometimes hidden, pathways. We meandered around the paths, taking it all in. It was so interesting to capture the views with different perspectives, as there are many different levels in the garden. This is a much more intimate feeling space than the Italian garden.

Images from the walled garden at Powerscourt Gardens
flowers from the walled garden at Powerscourt Gardens

3 & 4 – Walled Garden. This one definitely deserves two counts! I totally lost myself in the Walled garden, among ‘Ireland’s longest herbaceous border’. There was simply an abundance of color, shape and texture! Dahlia’s stole the show for me, but there were many supporting flowers. I have to add that one of the workers, who was busy weeding the beds here, was so kind and patiently answered our questions, even going out of her way to point out to us her favorite flowers. I spent a lot of time gawking. I loved the palate of colors, and with the mostly clear day, the mountains were a pretty backdrop.

fresh flowers in the entrance of Powerscourt Hotel
Afternoon tea at Powerscourt Hotel

5 – Afternoon tea at Powerscourt Hotel. Sure why not? What’s not to love about having delicious food in a beautiful setting with a dear friend? I have to confess that my love of flowers has me scrutinizing hotel lobbies, seeking out if they have fresh flowers. Powerscourt Hotel did not disappoint! The flowers, in shades of purple and pink, were quite showy and absolutely gorgeous! Our own dining table had a beautiful orchid, looking so delicate in a glass bowl. And sweetly, there were tiny flower petals on our sandwiches. I usually drink my (decaf) coffee in a heavy pottery mug. Drinking out of a tea cup made it feel that bit special. It was a treat that we both thoroughly enjoyed!

Triton lake at Powerscourt House and Gardens

6 – Triton lake. I’m always drawn to water. I usually find it soothing, especially fountains. This fountain is based on the one in Piazza Barberini, in Rome. It is a quite a focal point when looking out across the lake.

There were so many beautiful plants, trees and ‘things’ to see at Powerscourt House and Gardens! I’d highly recommend a visit, no matter what month it is. I’m sure the gardens are equally as lovely throughout the different seasons.

I hope you are keeping well. Take care!

In Peace,
Dana

Autumn vibes for this Six on Saturday

Hello there, and welcome to my blog! This fall has been filled with amazing colors, and that’s even before including the beautiful sunsets and sunrises. It has truly been non-stop beautiful. We’ve had mild weather for the most part, so far. I’ve been pottering about the garden, getting little jobs done here and there. The garden still looks good, thanks to fall blooming plants (fall bloomers), the changing colors of leaves and lots of pumpkins! I’ll again be joining the Propagator for his meme ‘Six on Saturday’. Let’s begin!

Dark pink asters

1 – Dark pink asters. No official name on these, but they are still going strong, even after my ‘light pink’ asters have long faded. They are a fabulously vibrant, fuchsia color and just shout ‘look at me’! They are quite tall, at least three feet, and *really* get blown around a lot (we live in a windy spot). A super easy plant that provides lots of color.

Princess Anne David Austin Rose

2 – Princess Anne rose. This David Austin rose shrub, Princess Anne, has been covered with bright pink roses all summer long and is continuing now through the fall. The flowers are also fragrant, which is a lovely bonus. The color is striking and can be seen from across the garden. This shrub does tend to get blackspot easily, unfortunately. But that’s my only complaint!

sunflower stem with multiple flowers

3 – Sunflower – Claret F1. This is probably one of the very last of the sunflowers to bloom. I had one plant in an extra bed which I needed to clear to plant some winter garlic. There were just two stems on the plant, so I cut them off and brought them inside. The teeny, tiny little blooms growing up the stem did indeed bloom after a few days! It was nice to have a bit of the garden inside. By the way, the wreath in the background is a hydrangea wreath that I made a couple of years ago. I’ll usually keep them until their color fades. This blue one hasn’t gotten the boot yet!

4 – Dahlia CafΓ© au Lait. I think the back of this lovely lady is as pretty as the front! OK, so I didn’t know you are supposed to cut the main stem of the dahlia shortly after it starts to grow, so that it will then have multiple blooming stems instead of one main – too heavy – stem. Erin at Floret Farm happened to have a video mid-season explaining all of this, and while she said it wasn’t too late to do this, I think that in Ireland it probably was too late. Anyway, with the weather being unpredictable, I brought the dahlia inside and it has continued to bloom, beautifully I might add. I am looking forward to getting it right next year!

Japanese Anemone dark pink

5 – Japanese anemone, dark pink. I have loads and loads and loads of the light pink variety of Japanese anemone (they spread like crazy)! But this was my only dark pink variety, stuck in the middle of all of the light pinks. I am not quite sure if I’ll manage to single it out to ensure it will multiply instead of the light pinks, but I really should try as it is very pretty.

I hadn’t realized that I’d picked mostly pink flowers for today’s post! Next week I will have to show you the blueberry shrubs and their amazing red leaves, which are providing some fabulous color in the garden. But back to pinks, check out this sky!

Sunrise blue and pink sky

6 – Sunrise over the garden. What can I say? It is such a treat to get up and see the sky like this! It really lit up my pumpkins, too. They have all turned orange, and just in time for Halloween! (Although I’m likely to keep them on for fall harvest decorating, instead of jack o’lantern use.)

Sunrise with moon in sky

One final look at the garden with the beautiful sunrise and visible moon. I hope you have had a beautiful October, too. I think we’re spoiled with all of this beauty to help us get through the not quite as beautiful winter months. That works for me! Take care!

In Peace,
Dana

Pumpkin arch finale for ‘Six on Saturday’

Hello and welcome to my blog! It’s the start of a new month, and a great time to take a quick look back at what’s been happening in the garden. I have finally cut down my pumpkins from the ‘pumpkin arch’. They’re all lined in front of it now, posing for the many pictures I’ve managed to take, and will probably continue to take! It was a lot of fun watching the pumpkins and squash grow and make their way up the arch. Hopefully, it’ll be as fun next year, too! I’m joining the Propagator’s meme of ‘Six on Saturday’ today. I think it’s a super and succinct way to cover what’s going on in the garden. Here we go!

Persicaria backfield with Rudbeckia goldstrum

1 – Persicaria backfield with Rudbeckia goldstrum. Persicaria is a new plant to me. This past spring I was buying the black-eyed Susan’s specifically for under my birch trees, when the Persicaria was recommended to me (thanks Darren at Nature Works!). There are many different varieties. But this one, with red spires, fits in perfectly with the Rudbeckia and birch trees. I like the different shape of the spires compared to the other flowers in the garden.

Coleus full grown with flowers
Coleus plants up close

2 – Coleus plants. I planted these guys from seed this year and I’m so please with them. There are so many different looks to them and they are all fabulous: solid burgundy leaves with a very fine trim of chartreuse around the edges, to a mix of fuchsia, burgundy and white leaves with chartreuse trim, as well as a thick edging of chartreuse and designs of burgundy within! They also bloom tall spires of tiny lilac flowers. I will try and overwinter them this year, but I think I’d also like to try growing some more. πŸ™‚

Red Astilbe

3 – Red Astilbe. This single flower is all that grew this year from the single plant that I planted at the end of last season. It is lovely, so I hope it eventually settles in, makes itself at home and spreads!

Compost in a tumbler

4 – Compost! The compost in my tumbler is *perfect* at the moment! It is full of worms, is somewhat crumbly (it is moist, though) and doesn’t smell. I’m so pleased with it and have been working it into different flower beds. It is somewhat awkward getting the compost out of the tumbler, but otherwise the tumbler works well. I have two tumblers for food waste, the rest of my garden waste goes on open compost ‘heaps’. The system works for us, and I get a lot of compost from it all.

Dana with Pumpkin arch and squash
Pumpkin arch October 1st

5 – Pumpkin arch. Ta-da! I think we’re at the end of the pumpkin arch now. I have cut off all of the pumpkins and there are just 3 Red Kuri squash hanging on. I’m quite pleased with what we’ve grown (all of it from seed). I’m already planning for next year, of course. I’m hoping to start earlier to get them over the top of the arch! πŸ™‚

Full view of garden from above

6 – Full view of the vegetable garden from above. It’s nice to get a bird’s eye view now and again! The asters and pumpkins really ‘pop’ in this picture, along with the Rowan tree! It was a really good season with the sunflowers, sweet pea, squash, pumpkins, coleus, blueberries, (and two pears!). I’m grateful to be able to do what I love to do – spend time in the garden!

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed some quality time doing what you love to do, too!

In Peace,
Dana