Friday, 20 July 2012

Dun a Ri Forest Park

Ladies Lake
I know I have blogged about this park before but seeing as its only 'down the road' I reckon this wont be the last time it comes up here. But I just cannot help myself.
I've been really lucky as an adult to live near great parks, my last abode wasnt too far a drive from Newbridge Park in Donabate,  Ardgillan Park in Skerries and Malahide Castle in North Co. Dublin.
All lovely parks; with playgrounds for the kids (very handy esp when our boys were younger), small cafes, and Newbridge Park has a wee farm too. I have some lovely memories of all three. Time spent in these parks kept me sane through some tough times in my life.

For anyone living in an estate having a public amenity like any of these parks near by is just brilliant.

For those of us living in the countryside having a park near by is equally brilliant. There isnt many roads where I live that one can go for a 'stroll on' without the fear of being run over by a speeding car. And if you visit this park on a good day you will meet plenty of strollers/walkers/joggers.

I count myself blessed to live so near to such a wonderful park, not a playground or cafe in sight though! But the entire park is like a playground, just ask my 10 & 11 year old boys! And if you are looking for a drink there are 2 wells to satisfy your thirst!

The park has 565 acres, with the Cabra river flowing through it. We are still finding new parts to explore, or should I say the boys are always finding new parts to explore, I just follow. Here is a little taste of what its like....

Cabra River Walk

Cabra River Walk

Refreshments available..

Cromwells Bridge

Rabbit Bridge
Horse Chestnut

Thursday, 19 July 2012

A very quick job

A couple of weeks ago we picked up some nice cute Lobularia maritima (Alyssum) flowers in mixed colours. They make great ground cover, but I was probably very late planting them out. They are supposed to be annuals but the 2 we planted last year came back again this year so fingers crossed these wee guys will make a reappearance next year, bigger and better!

Buying a second hand house has its advantages, one of which is that the lawns are established and the previous owners used railway sleepers to kerb the front drive.

But arent they very dull looking? And the one thing the garden is missing alot of is flowers. Something we are slowly trying to rectify! So I had an idea for the Sweet Alyssum....

After a bit of weeding I planted them out inbetween all of the sleepers. Some gaps were bigger than others so I had to compromise in places. But if they grow (hopefully) we'll have beautiful wee flowers instead of weeds/grass.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

A work in progress..

Woke up yesterday morning to no rain, which considering the week we've had was a surprise.

And as the old saying goes 'make hay while the sun shines' I was up and dressed and out to the garden as fast as my legs could carry me (not necessarily true but I can pretend).

I've so many jobs to do in the garden that I try to do them all at the same time, so a bit of this then a bit of that.

But one job that is a bit easier to do when its not raining is filling the wheelbarrow with sand/clay/pebbles and moving it to the veg patch.

A few weeks back I laid down sheets of black plastic inbetween some of our raised beds to kill off the grass and weeds. The idea is to eventually get rid of all the grass inbetween the raised beds and have nice pebbled walkways around them (easier said than done).

I've removed some of the plastic to reveal dead grass and mud. Next step is to put a layer of sand down before putting the polythene cover, and then covered this with pebbles......

our Sapro Mira potatoe plants

Its hard work, and theres only so many barrow loads I can manage in the one day, this is one job that will take some time to complete.

On the other side of our garden our so called lawn is now a meadow, we havent been able to mow it due to it being so wet but we dont really mind because the wildlife are loving it.

Another job I had been planning to do this year was make a permanent structure to enclose our 3 Blackcurrant bushes, a fruit cage of sorts, but I think it will have to wait, because the berries are starting to ripen and the birds wouldnt be long about finding them and eating them all on us.
So I've just covered them in netting instead.

In the polytunnel all of our 20 Tomato plants (Gardeners Delight) are starting to flower, I have to say I am so excited. Even the four extra that I have planted in pots are flowering. Hard to believe that from such a tiny flower comes one of Mother Natures juicy mouthfuls.