Dogs and trees and Spring sunshine.

In Animals, Trees on April 4, 2012 at 3:10 pm

When we arise in the morning the first job, after putting the kettle on, is to let the dogs out of their shed. They then come in the house for a while. If it’s sunny they like to lie down and catch a few rays in the sitting room where the couch is appropriately situated.

In the field the animals do the same thing. How clever they are to avail of this solar energy…actually  I think they’re a lot cleverer than most people give them credit for. I’ve also noticed many times that the bulk of their bodies will be facing full on towards the sun to expoit it fully.

On Sunday we bought 30 bare root trees at the local garden centre. It’s the end of the bare root season now so they were selling them off at half price. They worked out at an average of 80 cent each. Bargain! The haul included Birch, Alder, Rowan, Poplar, Larch and Acer. A small forest in the making.

After soaking them overnight we planted them up on Monday morning. Working together the job was done quickly. Compost was emptied into the wheelbarrow… Andy held the tree upright in the pot and I backfilled it with compost. Took about an hour to plant the lot.

The bigger trees we placed near this rain water barrel which will be convenient for watering throughout the Summer. In Autumn we intend incorporating our small field…below the polytunnels…into the garden…these will then be planted there. The smaller trees are at the other side of the house near another rain barrel.

In the shade bed these lovely Primulas have started flowering. I have that to confess that this was one I “slipped” from another garden I visited. Naughty but I will share it on as it bulks up. “Slipping” is a word Irish people…especially older people…use for taking a cutting or an offshoot with roots from a plant. Years ago many people had cottage gardens where all the plants would have been grown from “slips.” Does anyone else know of this phrase?

In the polytunnel Parsley and Rocket give lots of green pickings. This is Wild Rocket which has…for me…a nicer flavour than the ordinary Rocket. Parsley and Rocket together make for a really nice pesto which I will make when the current batch of Wild Garlic pesto has run out. Basil is already planted and germinated for the Summer pesto.

And in the polytunnel the dogs are once again strategically placed to catch the rays of the afternoon sunshine.

  1. Such a nice post. I almost felt like I was there with you guys. We say “take a slip” here, but never “slipping”, I like it.

  2. Hi Bridget,

    You asked why my pak-choi don’t get into flowering. I don’t know why. I use Burpee seeds and this is my first year. Maybe the temperature here is low?

  3. What gorgeous primulas! That is a great deal you got on those trees – hope they grow into a cool shady forest soon.

  4. Beautiful primula, my mom always tries to get bits of plants going but I have never heard it called `slips’ – you learn something new everyday on the blogs 😀

  5. I’m familiar with the word ‘slips’ as well, mainly from my parents. Have not heard it in a while though. Must my mam about it when I see her!

  6. How many dogs do you have? I love dogs. One of my dog – the jack russell terrier – is always trying to catch as much sun as possible.

  7. Your pups are darling! I hope you have plenty of water out for them.

  8. Hi Bridget. Good job buying that forest. My grandma here in Oregon used to talk about taking slips from plants. I haven’t heard the term in years though. I do think it’s kind of cute and I thank you for reminding me of it.

  9. Great bargain on those trees! The term ‘slip’ is also used over here. It was a commonly used term when I was growing up. Probably came down from our Irish great-grandparents

  10. I haven’t heard of the term slipping but I have had a bit of practice 😉 Your solar powered dogs have won my heart x

  11. Everything is really coming to life! We envy your bare root trees (and the good deal!). This year we decided not to plant trees since we had such a terrible, hot, dry summer last year and suspect the same for this year. We are just now discovering how many mature trees we lost – heartbreaking.

  12. Well spotted with the trees Bridget – very reasonable price. I have that primula as well and hope to split it once it has finished flowering. When I kept milking goats, they used to lay in the sun with their udders exposed – so I had to be on hand with the sun cream as they easily got burned.

  13. Those look like some happy beasties 🙂 I’m jealous of your water butt – our downpipe comes down in the neighbour’s garden!

  14. I haven’t come across the use of ‘slip’. I like the idea of it though. I love the colour of that Primula, very beautiful. No sunshine here, it’s cold and wet but fortunately no snow. I’m so envious of your polytunnel, it must be lovely to be able to retreat inside there on days like this and still be growing and picking. Those trees sound like a real bargain.

  15. You got a good bargain with those trees, Bridget. Yep, the dogs here always find the sunny spots too.I love your rain barrel, it would be so handy if I had one with a tap too!
    We always said “slips” too. My mother and her friend would go for a walk up the road collecting “Cipins”,(small sticks to start the fire), no firelighters in those days… and come home with a load of wild slips too 🙂

  16. My mom was good at taking slips from gardens and making them grow. And my father-in-law does that with old rose bushes he finds at former house sites and even cemetaries. He has some lovely bushes that you can’t buy anymore.

  17. Nice Primula! I’m not familiar with it, but it’s gorgeous. I’m not familiar with the term slipped either, other than used in conjunction with sweet potatoes, but I’m guilty of pilfering seeds from some of my client’s yards. I don’t take them all, of course. Shhh…

    Sweet dogs!

  18. We used the term ‘slip’ back when I was taking horticulture classes. My grandmother used to take slips from plants around the neighborhood when I would take walks with her.

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