Month: February 2018

Jimi Blake of Hunting Brook Gardens has announced his selection of Garden Tours for 2018. His focus is to bring exclusive opportunities to see private gardens and locations that may otherwise be difficult to visit.

A full itinerary and booking information is on the website: Gardens of Scotland, 1 to 3 May; Great English Gardens in the Lake District, 22 to 25 May; Somerset Gardens, 25 to 28 July, and Dutch Wave Gardens & Nurseries, 29 August to 1 September.

The Coronet miniature apple tree has been a best seller for 20 years. It was the brainchild of Springfield Nurseries owner, Dr Pat McDonnell. Coronet trees crop immediately, remain miniature permanently and are easy to grow with no pruning needed.

They may be grown in the garden soil or in a container and are ideal for small spaces. The Coronet Family tree has two varieties of apples on the one tree and pollinate one another. They are available in all good garden centres. For more information, see

Gee-up, made in Blarney, Co. Cork, is simply well-composted horse manure. It is an entirely natural product, no peat added, and no chemicals involved. Gee-up is an Organic Trust Certified Product.

Gee-up has reduced the size and price of their large bags of Gee-up for ease of handling. The large bags now in stock weigh approximately 18kgs and retail at €7.50 each. “Twenty or forty large bags on a pallet are still great value delivered to your door.”

Small bags and bulk bags also available. See or call 021-4381485.

The origin of ‘Cool Breeze’ began with a keen eye and a single offspring from a production field of 3,000 typical gaura plants. This selection was used as the starting point for breeding work.

The stems and buds were greenish-white instead of the pinkish-red coloring on the common gaura. ‘Cool Breeze’ has graceful blooms of pure white. Pure white, vegetatively-grown gauras exist in the trade, but ‘Cool Breeze’ is the first seed-grown strain available.

GIY in partnership with Energia has announced ‘Energia Get Ireland Growing’, a €75,000 pool of funding available to enable food-growing by community and voluntary organisations all across Ireland including Northern Ireland. The application period is open until 19 January 2018.

In 2018, the Energia Get Ireland Growing Fund will be split across three categories ‘Sow’, ‘Grow’ and ‘Harvest’ with awards ranging from €500 to €2,000. It is open to any community group, school, NGO or Not for Profit, community garden or allotment group, GIY group, hospital, crèche, direct provision centre, men’s shed or any group.

The Echo HCA-265ES HD articulating hedge cutter is the latest addition to the Echo range and offers an overall length of 2,446mm making it ideal for cutting tall or wide hedges with no need for a platform or ladder.

A key feature is the heavy-duty gearcase, which is one of the main differentiating factors from the other long-reach hedge cutters in the range. For stockists, the Echo distributor in the Republic is Irish Farm & Garden Machinery, Hazelbrook, Malahide, Co. Dublin. Tel 01-8463922.

2017 Landscape Awards

The 2017 Landscape Awards, recognising the best work by ALCI members from across Ireland, were presented recently at the Convention Centre, Dublin.

Gary Graham, Bloom Manager Bord Bía, one of the judges, commented: “We should never underestimate the value of the work undertaken by landscape contractors. Not every entry in the ALCI competition can be a winner but every piece of quality work adds to the quality of life for someone or some group of people living on this island and indeed everyone who visits here for business or pleasure. So, ultimately, we all win.”

A world-class plant collection, which includes the Northern Hemisphere’s biggest tree-fern forest, will be exhibited at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show at the end of May 2018.

The exhibition moves to ‘Bloom in the Park’ immediately afterwards and on to the RHS Tatton Park in July of next year, owner Billy Alexander confirmed, further stating that this was a huge honour.

Showcasing at such an event is not cheap and Mr Alexander is actively looking for a main sponsor for Chelsea. “This is a massive opportunity not just for Kells Bay but for Ireland as a whole.” free newsletter

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