Bridget

Posts Tagged ‘aquilega’

Rainbows and other musings from Prospect Cottage.

In arigna, Gardening on June 23, 2011 at 10:46 am

Are’nt rainbows beautiful? This was one of several which adorned the valley yesterday evening. One benefit of the changeability of the current weather, rain and sunshine alternating produce these beautiful arches of prismatic colours in the sky.

A vase of Ferns and Snapdragons adorn the window in the fading evening light. The stained glass Trinity Knot has the same colours as the rainbow. The morning sun catches it here in the east facing window and throws it’s own rainbow on the kitchen table.

In the new flower bed this Aquilega has come into flower. Isn’t it pretty? I wonder if seeds from this will breed true. I will save some anyway and see what I get.

In the veg garden the Peas are flowering and the first pods have formed. These are Meteor a low growing variety. They are supported by a circle of sheep wire held in position with a couple of bits of bamboo.

Lots of edible flowers have self-seeded in the polytunnel. Marigold, Borage and Nasturtiums all add colour to our salad bowls,Kale and Carrots are growing in this patch too. This system of companion planting keeps everything healthy and disease free.

At the opposite end of the polytunnel Cosmos and Borage are also attracting lots of beneficial insects.

Ladybirds and Garden pics from Prospect Cottage.

In Gardening, sustainable living on May 19, 2011 at 10:01 am

Rhododendron ponticum  is just coming into flower at the moment. Hated by many because it is so invasive one cannot deny the beauty of it’s flowers. Introduced to England and Ireland in the 18th century it has escaped into the wild choking out all in it’s path. Every Summer grows of volunteers work at cutting it back, especially in Kerry where it has become a huge problem. Each plant sets thousands of viable seeds so it’s progress is speedy. It is also poisonous to animals.

Was delighted to see this Ladybird yesterday, first one this year. They are in serious decline because of pesticide use and habitat disturbance. One way to help Ladybirds is to leave a patch of Nettles in your garden. The Nettle Aphid is a fave food of Ladybirds emerging from hibernation, it is’nt a garden pest. Ladybirds are of course a great friend to the gardener, they will consume aphids, scale insects and mealy bugs. Many people consider them lucky and love to see them. My Mother’s name for them is God’s Cows, that’s what they were always called when she was a child.

The old cottage garden favourite Aquilega is in flower at the moment. Also known as Columbine or Granny’s Bonnet it’s flowers are short-lived but so pretty. It is easily grown from seed and self seeds readily.

The Victoria Plum has set lots of fruits again this year. It likes the heavy ground here. We also have a young Opal Plum tree which has set fruit for the first time. Once again it seems that working with Nature will provide abundance here in the Arigna valley.