Whilst at one of the workshops held in the new Caw Nelson Community Growing Space, I stumbled across this lovely little space. Named the Marie Curie Herb Garden. Its a wonderful little space full of fruit, herbs and plants to benefit biodiversity.
for more history of this space, please see page 5 on the below Newsletter from Northern Ireland Housing Executive
Join me this Saturday from 1pm for a bit of Gardening banter in the newly launched Caw Nelson Community Growing Space....
Winter can be a dull affair, the autumnal colours of Autumn are a recent memory and many landscapes can appear dull and lifeless. This is where evergreens come into their own, in the winter months they can provide habitat, colour and interest in the landscape. This Cedar caught my eye on a recent stroll through Ebrington. Its glauca blue needles were being shown of by the winter sun and it just looked lovely.
old garden gate
Sunday saw us take a stroll aroudn the house, gardens, riverfront, woodland and Marine Base of Ashbrook House in Ardmore...the weather was pure murder, lashing rain most of our time there but the site was fierce interesting....lots to see, some spectacular trees, bushes, foliage and the house itself is just steeped in history....the generosity of our host was brilliant and the craic amongst the group made the near 4 hours fly by...here's some of my pics from the day...
chinese artifacts decorate the hall
Ashbrook is a fantastic place....a private family home which just oozes history....a must for anyone who's into historical houses, ancient woodlands and a great day out....join Ashbrook on Facebook here
This weeks hobby gardening class we did a wee workshop on how to make a raise bed for your garden, with the group we made a raised bed 3mx1m from pressure-treated 6" lengths. This was as a result of participants saying they'd love to see how one is made...so in the NWRC you ask we deliver!
massive beech trees
This week the kids from Groarty primary School and myself visited the historic Ashbrook House in Ardmore, as a field trip venue to look at Autumn leaves and trees its ideal, everything is a short walk from the coach drop-opp point, the range of tree sis extensive and mature and there is many unusual and interesting varieties on site, and it gives us a chance to combine History and Horticulture....
taking in the sights in the hallway
and of course there is the house itself, which is just lovely, and where else could you do a autumn tree trail and combine a visit to a pre-plantation house....very few places. We were guided in the house and gardens by Mrs Beresford-Ash who was very generous with her time and the kids loved hearing abotu the history of her, the family, the hosue, the furniture, the artifacts, the animals everything. And the kids were excellent is asking interesting questions, showing great respect for their surroundings and were a shining example in good behaviour.
in under 2 hours the kids had found every tree on their Woodland Trust Autumn leaf finder checklist, found umpteen mushrooms, lichens, ferns and the likes, saw trees of a size and age you would struggle to see outwith a Botanical Gardens, toured a pre-plantation house, saw an old sawmill, a laundrette, a pantry and let's not forget about the stuffed Leopard and the Bear....without getting their feet muddy (a school teachers dream!).
Ashbrook house can be contacted on 02871349223, house is private and only open to appointment.
the 'don't touch anything' talk
on Sunday we had a great mushroom foraging event on, guided by Colin Peck from Prehen House we decended on one of Derrys ancient woodlands on the look-out for some bits of magic....and buy we found plenty!! These types of events are all about exploring the concept of Food for Free, once you know what your looking for you're better equipped for the future....
DO NOT START PICKING AND EATIN MUSHROOMS UNLESS YOUR 100% SURE THEY'RE EDIBLE!!!
round the table in prehen house
and after the forage we retired to Prehen House where Colin cooked up some of the mushrooms simply in some cream and butter for us all to enjoy. A great end to a great day. started off at 2.30 and finished at 6pm....great weather, great group, plenty of banter...and a feed at the end. Ideal in my eyes. Hopefully everyone in the group is more confident in their ability to spot edible mushrooms and by growing in familiarity it helps to breed confidence in yourself to go looking...with a guide book in hand still!
Burntollet Wood is the new forest being planted by Woodland Trust, its up beside Ervey Wood and these two and Ness Wood form Ness Country Park. This week myself and City and Guilds Students from North West Regional College joined the Faughan Valley Regineration Group for a day fun exploring the woodland and planting trees...
Due to the massive demand for last Sundays wild mushroom forage we are looking to schedule another event for this saturday
Again Colin Peck will give a guided tour with a fabulous cook-up at the end of the forage back in Prehen House.
Sat 27th October
Venue : Ervey Wood car park
Cost £10 per head
Please leave a comment below if you'd like to attend this fabulous forage fest....
wee courtyard garden in NWRC
hey guys, a new batch of 'Hobby Seasonal Gardening' in North West Regional College (Springtown) will start on the 23rd November, running from 2-4pm. This is the most popular class I take, it's always booked out. It runs for 10 weeks and covers all the to-do seasonal stuff in the garden including Sowing, cuttings, pruning, planting, containers, layout, fruit, herbs, vegetables and anything else thats current. The course costs £25, with £20 concession. Class size limited to 16. Book a place by emailing Liam Clarke on firstname.lastname@example.org
Gardening on Radio Foyle
A summary of each weeks gardening on Mark Patterson Show and beyond