Category Archives: Garden tour

Kim Tyner’s wonderful “permaculture” garden in Wicklow!

Continuing my tour of Wicklow gardens which Orlaith Murphy had arranged for me! After a great lunch at Wendy Nairn’s house I was unprepared for the amazing garden that awaited me next: Kim and Angus Tyner’s Honeyoak garden! WOW! Kim is a wonderful plantswoman and Angus is equally passionate about wildlife, in particular the incredible diversity of moths in Wicklow and won an award for his work on registering wildlife diversity (http://www.biodiversityireland.ie/record-biodiversity/distinguished-recorders/distinguished-recorder-2013). He also runs  his own local weather station! Observation!
I arrived 20 years after Kim and Angus took over the land! They had their priorities right right from the start and they started their vegetable patch before building the house! Today, the couple are almost sufficient in vegetables and fruit and there are two polytunnels in addition to the large wild looking diverse veggie garden  which integrates a number of perennials and  herbs. For me, the garden could have been inspired by permaculture as many of its techniques have been employed. Kim hand digs, uses mulches, saves seed, the house is powered by solar panels and a wood-fired range, and as much as possible is sourced locally. They also have hens, bees and a cow, so no longer totally vegetarian as they were for 20 years (doing it yourself is clearly very important here!).  The garden is still evolving with new beds being planted, nut trees and many edimentals in the ornamental beds. There is diversity everywhere, this is clearly a fantastic oasis for wildlife and the large pond they created has even been visited by an otter. It was a dull wet day, so I hope my pictures do justice to this inspirational garden! Oh and I was very “habby” to see one of my babies in the garden, the Caucasian spinach (Hablitzia tamnoides) :)
See more at

http://honey-oak.blogspot.com https://www.facebook.com/HoneyoakGarden

Wendy Nairn’s for lunch!

After visiting the Kilmacurragh botanical garden (http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20724), my next visit in Wicklow, Ireland was to one of the founders of the organic movement in Ireland now with over 30 years of experience and she  had invited us to a wonderful vegetarian lunch with local greens at her house! Wendy Nairn is passionate about producing fresh nutritious vegetables using sustainable wildlife friendly methods and her garden was full of interesting plants and is certainly a haven for wildlife! Shame about the weather as all the wildlife was hiding and we didn’t stay outside for long either! Kim Tyner, whose garden Honeyoak was to be our next stop joined us!
Before lunch, we visited Wendy’s daughter Hazel and her partner Davi’s new organic market farm in nearby Ashford (https://www.facebook.com/HazelandDavisWicklowFarm), reminding me of Mandy Barber’s IncredibleEdibles in Devon, both on what was sheep pasture!

 

Visit to the Kilmacurragh Botanical Garden in 2018

Back in September again and I was in Ireland and my friend Orlaith Murphy had set up a diverse tour of great local gardens for me! Day two, we visited the National Botanical Gardens in Kilmacurragh which is still undergoing restoration after being taken over by the main botanical gardens in Dublin in 1996! There’s been a garden here for a long time and you can read more of its history here:
http://botanicgardens.ie/kilmacurragh and its monumental trees here:  https://www.monumentaltrees.com/en/irl/leinster/wicklow/2531_kilmacurragharboretum

As usual, most of the pictures are of useful and unusual edible plants discovered on our visit! See also the two videos at the bottom!

Back in 2011, I visited the main botanical garden in Dublin and here are a series of blogs from then:

The Vegetable Garden at the National Botanic Garden in Dublin in 2011:  http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20530

Berberis and other unusual fruit at the botanics in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20547

Medimental border in Dublin 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20550

Yellow Yews in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20580

Other edible plants: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20607

 

Other edible plants in the Dublin Botanical Gardens in 2011

In early October 2011, I was on a work trip in Ireland (Cork) and stopped off to see the city’s botanical garden for the first time!
Here’s an album of pictures of mostly edible plants spotted during my day in this wonderful garden!

All posts from Dublin in 2011
The Vegetable Garden at the National Botanic Garden in Dublin in 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20530

Berberis and other unusual fruit at the botanics in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20547

Medimental border in Dublin 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20550

Yellow Yews in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20580

Other edible plants: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20607

Medimental border in Dublin 2011

In early October 2011, I was on a work trip in Ireland (Cork) and stopped off to see the city’s botanical garden for the first time! I found this border composed of medicinal and edible ornamentals…a medimental border…

All posts from Dublin in 2011
The Vegetable Garden at the National Botanic Garden in Dublin in 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20530

Berberis and other unusual fruit at the botanics in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20547

Medimental border in Dublin 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20550

Yellow Yews in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20580

Other edible plants: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20607

Berberis and other unusual fruit at the botanics in Dublin

In early October 2011, I was on a work trip in Ireland (Cork) and stopped off to see the city’s botanical garden for the first time! Here’s a series of pictures of unusual fruit bushes and trees taken on my recent visit to the National Botanical Garden in Dublin. I’d never seen such a good collection of Berberis before – impressive diversity…

All posts from Dublin in 2011
The Vegetable Garden at the National Botanic Garden in Dublin in 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20530

Berberis and other unusual fruit at the botanics in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20547

Medimental border in Dublin 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20550

Yellow Yews in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20580

Other edible plants: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20607

The Vegetable Garden at the National Botanic Garden in Dublin in 2011

In early October 2011, I was on a work trip in Ireland (Cork) and stopped off to see the city’s botanical garden for the first time!

All posts from Dublin in 2011
The Vegetable Garden at the National Botanic Garden in Dublin in 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20530

Berberis and other unusual fruit at the botanics in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20547

Medimental border in Dublin 2011: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20550

Yellow Yews in Dublin: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20580

Other edible plants: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=20607

A Cool Windy Planet Experience at Powerscourt

Back in September again and I was in Ireland and my friend Orlaith Murphy had set up a diverse tour of great local gardens for me! My first blog was from Carraig Dulra Permaculture Farm, here: http://www.edimentals.com/blog/?p=19592

After Carraig Dulra, the plan was to visit one of Ireland’s great gardens, Powerscourt and to kick off we were to meet  Bruce Johnson (a member of the family that owns the house and gardens). He very kindly treated us to lunch at Powerscourt. As we sat eating lunch, Bruce commented that there weren’t many people around today and we put it down to the storm (Ali; see link below) that had hit Dublin and Wicklow in the night, putting people off travelling. After lunch we  discovered there was another reason when we were told at the  garden entrance that the gardens had been closed because of danger of falling trees and branches after the storm….
What to do? Bruce suggested seeing a video introduction to the amazing story behind the house and gardens including Ireland’s tallest waterfall, the Powerscourt Waterfall at 121m, a 6km walk from the house on the river Dargle (you can see it too here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxrFPrJlTQc ).  Briefly: the house was originally a 13th-century castle and was extensively altered during the 18th century by German architect Richard Cassels, starting in 1731 and finishing in 1741. A fire in 1974 left the house lying as a shell until it was renovated in 1996! Originally the family seat of the Viscounts Powerscourt, the estate has been owned by the Slazenger family, founders and former owners of the Slazenger sporting goods company since 1961.

Bruce’s next suggestion was to go do the adjacent Cool Planet Experience, an “interactive climate action experience” for all ages (see https://powerscourt.com/estate/cool-planet-experience). Very different from what we had expected when we arrived at Powerscourt, but we had great fun!

Before parting ways with Bruce, we visited a wooded area just outside the main garden and saw the best avenue of monkey puzzle trees I’ve seen in the British Isles!
Thanks again, Bruce!!

Storm Ali : https://www.irishtimes.com/news/environment/storm-ali-two-dead-and-thousands-without-power-1.3634177

 

Jorge’s edible water garden

I’ll always be grateful to my friend Jorge Carona as without him I would never have been invited to Portugal. The story of how we met is told here:

Sintra Foraging with Fernanda Botelho

He was also instrumental in suggesting that the Ecoaldeia de Janas should invite me to give a course! Added to that, he did almost all the driving on my trip. I also spent two nights at his house on the hills in Calhandriz above Alverca near Lisbon and was able to see his edible water gardens for the first time! So here are a few pictures of the garden, sadly neglected as Jorge wasn’t living here for some time! He has a large water tank under an outhouse to supply the water for this project! The pond is an oasis for wildlife in the dry countryside which has been suffering from drought for several years! Many thanks, Jorge!
Other edible water plants in the pond: Bacopa, Acorus, Oenanthe, Houttuynia, Aponogeton and watercress. Elsewhere in the garden, Jorge has planted apples, pears, orange, plums,fig and edible bamboos! A great little garden!