Sowing the Seeds of Love

Now is a good time to start sowing seeds – any flowers of your choice – for an abundance of colour from summer through to Autumn



Popppies are prolific self seeders and once you plant them in your garden they will continue to self seed every year over the years – they provide a late spring/an early summer colourful display and the bees just can’t get enough of them either


Whether you choose the traditional red or a colourful mix of orange and yellow they will bring sunshine to your garden everyday


golden wonder orange and yellow poppes2


golden wonder yellow and orange poppies




And then have fun after the blooms fade pressing the flowers and making your own creations for cards, decorating present wrapping etc


DSC_0313 (2)


Marigolds are another prolific seed producer.  Once you get them in your garden you can collect the seeds annually and sow again in early Spring to produce colourful displays for your summer garden. They don’t tend  to self seed like the poppies so best to hand collect the seeds once the flowers have faded.  Best grown in pots as the snails love these too! But try not to use slug pellets. When hedgehogs eat the slugs they ingest the pellets too and this in turn destroys them and upsets the whole delicate ecological balance.


Sunshine on a rainy day



and have some fun pressing the flowers…………. to make your own unique creations






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Love you my luver

Valentines day here it is again and for those of you who hate all the cheesey things that sometimes come with the day remember it doesn’t have to be that way. Keep the flag for love flying high and keep romance alive. It doesn’t have to be an endurance meal out in the company of couples forced into looking like they are having a good time.  Make it your own.

Sit outside and enjoy the night sky together even if it is pea soup.


set the scene

This cute shelter,  complete with love  seat,  was crafted from the thick branches of the elderflower that was cut back last year. A great place to sit even in the rain.



Just add some champagne on ice and a couple of glasses, squeeze into a love seat under the starry sky and cuddle up for love




some chocolate and love hearts to complete the perfect moment




There is nothing more romantic than making your own present. A hand made card or painting are often appreciated even more than the most expensive gift because it is real and comes from the heart



Love you tweetie pie! (pressed flowers and plant seeds on recycled paper)


Paint your own

A flock of love hearts (acrylic on canvas)


True love captured for ever




Love is……………………………..

Watching the sun set together



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Where did you come from my lovely

With ample blossom, snowdrops and the beginnings of the narcissi blooming about it would appear that Spring is emerging.  Time perhaps to start thinking about getting seeds in for cultivating your summer window boxes and baskets.  As bedding can get quite expensive why not save seeds from last years pots and plant them to grow your own blooms this summer. If you have already discarded all of these remember there is always another chance at the end of the summer blooming season.

I especially love French marigolds for their bright colourful display and their easiness to grow and maintain. I usually have them in abundance


Keep summer going for longer with these zesty coloured marigolds that stay blooming well into September and October if the weather is mild

marigolds pots

marigold seeds

extract the tiny seeds from dead flower heads.  Happy cultivating there is nothing more satisfying.


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Nobody told me there would be days like these

As I plan some summer projects for the garden and search for inspiration I look back on the pictures of last summer that transport me to another world a million miles from the stark cold days we are experiencing at the moment. It gives me hope and where there is hope there is life despite the current governments efforts to destroy it as we know it. There seems to be an upward trend in friendliness from mankind in general so go on do your bit to spread that love. If you don’t already, smile to passer by’s in the street in your neighbourhood. You will be amazed at how good it will make you (and them) feel.

For  now keep going with and enjoying the winter walks even if it is too cold to take your hands out of your pockets to use the camera🙂




On the rare occasions when the temperature becomes unbearable escape to the cool woods who needs air conditioning




  • The perfect sculpture – created by nature



Serene Green – calms the mind



Cool Clear Water


Getting up close and personal


Nothing says it better than roses


I “heart” nature

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Transformation without the perspiration

birdbath and poppies close up



front garden vision


The Vision

When my small front patch was a pile of rubble of mud a few years ago it was hard to believe that it would ever become the space that only existed in my head.  Although I had drawn a rough plan of how it would be I knew that my image of the finished, matured project would take time coming and would evolve on the way. There is still the maturing of the two small bay trees, that I added,  to come but apart from that the wild flowers have certainly settled into the space and have helped create a feeling that the garden has always existed as a space in time. Although I have done my best to photograph the space (it’ a new camera and am still learning about exposure🙂 ) I always think that spaces are for feeling and there is no better way to view a garden than to walk amongst it – although you can get pleasure from viewing a garden – it’s real true sense only becomes apparent when you get in there!


from this


works commencing

 to this

 The choice of natural stone fitted in well as it instantly gives a feeling of age – the laurels and the bays take the space back to its Edwardian roots

corner stone

full view

full view

gardenfull view

feel it

get amongst it

 in two easy years


The structuring and planting took less than a week and the naturalising of the flowers settled into a feeling of “I’ve lived here a lifetime” in two years.

I love the way the moss has naturally over time created a base for it all and the stepping stones sit happily amongst it all.

mossy magic


stepping stone detail




The space is cyclical and seasonal – the laurel backdrop feature wall and moss carpet interspersed with natural stepping stones and planted with bays and evergreen ferns  create all year round interest and greenery

birdbath and poppies


Spring gently announces itself with the some pretty yellow  narcissi and purple muscari, swiftly followed by a burst of  forget-me-nots and bluebells, getting it all in the full swing


birdbath and bluebells


As summer arrives so do the yellow and orange and yellow poppies, dancing in the sunshine

dancing poppies

birdbath and poppies close up

birdbath and poppies


birdbath and stepping stones

 The yearly work is done by nature – now that is a true gardeners paradise – all of the beauty and none of the back ache

As the spring fest fades the arrival of  beautiful tall white flowers around the birdbath is anticipated and coupled with an overflowing hanging basket of white trailing Bacopa and geraniums the summer look will be complete

summer white flowers

hanging basket of bacopa and geraniums

Now all that is left is for me to enjoy on a daily basis  being greeted  with a delicious feast for the senses as I  walk in and out of the house every day.   Oh the joys of nature – how could we live without it!






A bird in a bath is worth two in a bush

Now that the weather is warming up the birds are back busily about feeding and bathing,  delighting us all.  We all plant to  encourage wildlife into the garden so why not get creative and add decorative interest whilst you are at it for any creatures that will benefit?  There is nothing more delightful than watching birds have a drink and a wash from various vessels that I have distributed about the garden – it gives a real chance to connect with and  enjoy nature at it’s best.  Encourage  and enjoy wildlife in your outside space any which way you can.  Below are some ideas how to do just that.

decorative iron bird bath 2

When the birds are not bathing the petals are floating!


decorative iron bird bath


The birds love to have a drink and and a wash from this small decorative wall hanging vessel.  It is placed close to the back door so I can watch them close up from inside

wall hanging bird bath


This free standing bird bath makes a great centrepiece or can  add mysterious interest tucked away in a corner.  Mine is placed  underneath a climbing jasmine which likes to collect and prettily float the falling flowers as the summer grooves on.

wrought iron birdbath



stone bird bath


The stone birdbath sits amongst the woodland and ferns providing a shady and quiet spot at the end of the garden for the birds to bathe.

stone bird bath close up

The stone becomes more naturalised over time gathering moss

sri lankan water vessel

This decorative bowl provides another source for the birds to wash and drink

sri lankan bird bath close up

wooden bird house

The rustic hand made bird box filled with seeds provides food and a place for birds to nest

wooden bird house close up

If left undisturbed and placed in a high up sheltered spot  the birds will move in over time

birdhouse in tree

Des Res – who wouldn’t love to live here!

coconut birdfeeder

Cut out a coconut shell and fill it with seeds. This one is hanging in a tree by my bedroom window it is a delightful  to watch the birds feed and the singing is second to none



Adding a bug box will give the bugs have an undisturbed home and existence amongst all the reorganising and spring cleaning on the patio as well ad adding colour and decorative interest.




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The Alliums Have Landed


The shift in seasons has meant that everything in the garden is blooming about a month later than usual.  But thankfully this year they are all  still doing their thing.  Last year during March it was so wet and soggy and lacking in sunshine that the alliums (which are from the onion family and prefer dryer conditions) didn’t even bloom at all.  However this year they have come back in full force  and whilst their usual habit is to bloom at the end of April early May, they didn’t bloom until end of May and are still in bloom even though it is nearly mid June.






The Bluebells came and went in April

bluebells and forget me nots


the forget me nots are still lingering on well into June –  insisting not to be forgotten

forget me nots



The orange lillies under the apple tree which have bloomed the first week of June every year like clockwork since I planted them there 10 years ago, still don’t look like they are anyway nearly ready to come into bloom – another couple of weeks perhaps? So the general feel  for everything is the blooming time has shifted forward by about a month.


The Poppies seem to be enjoying themselves though and are flowering abundantly and prolifically for the past month with no signs of fading just yet

golden wonder yellow and orange poppies


Yellow and Orange Poppies

golden wonder orange and yellow poppes2


Golden Wonders bringing in a ray of sunshine even on dull summer days

poppies yellow and orange

The unseasonally cold weather for this year might be keeping us all indoors but I am happy to say that it has not stopped the flowers in the garden coming out to play and cheering me up no end. It might not feel like summer outside but when I look out into the garden it is giving me hope it might arrive any day soon!



Party on Plants!

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Plant with Passion

Tulips and primroses

Whether you have an expansive football pitch or a tiny terrace plant it with passion. Planting an evergreen backdrop and a rotation of perennials (plants that will relentlessly pop up every year) for each season will ensure your space has colour and vibrancy all year round.  It is a formula that will work in most spaces. Planting en mass is always an eye catcher and keeping your selection of specimens to a minimum will ensure your space looks relaxed and  natural and doesn’t end up looking like  a mismatched patchwork.  Keeping the colour palate simple will also help make sure that plants will make maximum impact  with minimum effort. Start simply – it always easier to add on afterwards if the desired effect hasn’t been achieved first time round.

tulips explanse3

An expanse of tulips interspersed with primroses would make an equal impact on a small patio planted in containers,  troughs or window boxes. 

Tulip expanse

For early spring a simlar effect could be achieved using narcissi interspersed with snowdrops and muscari or for late spring try planting bluebells and primroses.  Forget-me-nots are also a useful self seeder that look great with all the spring flowers. The combination of colours and plants is yours to choose.

tulips and daisy white2

May Peace Be With You

White Tulips and Chrysanthemum


tulips and daisy white

White Tulips and chrysanthemums  

tulips and wallflowrers pink

Pretty in Pink –

Tulips and Wallflowers


tulips and wallflowers

Feeling Hot Hot Hot

Yellow Tulips and Orange Wallflowers

Spring is the visible beginning of the gardening year and a good time to excite your interest for the rest of the year.  Mark your calender for next autumn to remind you to plant some spring bulbs for next spring or get some ready grown ones in for this year before it is too late.  The daffodils are already beginning to fade  but this can only mean they are making room for the tulips and bluebells to have their proud moment on stage.

go large

Don’t be afraid to pack them in!

Happy Spring Planting

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The Show Must Go On

ahoy me hearties

ahoy me hearties

It’s a long time coming – Spring.  The unseasonally harsh cold weather has kept the blooms at bay, which is probably a good thing as in  previous springs that have burst forth early in all their glory,  blooms have been nipped in the bud  days after their splendour has arrived depriving us of the crown,   the many more blooming weeks that should have been to come.  So far it is really only the primroses and daffodils that have been brave enough to poke their pretty heads through in the garden.  The muscari are trying hard and heres hoping that before long they will make it through, which may be a sign that we can all thaw out and enjoy some warm spring sunshine. Winter may not have left us left but nature is still doing it’s thing albeit  at a lot slower pace than usual.

daffodil bowl“Break on through to the other side”

The daffodils have made it!

daffodil bowl 2Pop a daffodil bowl on the patio table

naturalised narcissi

The narcissi have now naturalised around my garden – truly making it feel like Easter even if the uncharacteristic cold weather isn’t

easter primrose window box

This planted up  Easter window box of polyanthus at the back of my garden is just about surviving the long cold snap,  some of the blooms are looking a bit frost bitten (so were my hands when I quickly planted them last week!)

pale of primroses

whilst this pale of the wild primroses that pop up every year seem to be standing up to it all with a smile on their face

muscariThe muscari which have naturalised in the garden are struggling through with frost bitten leaves, whilst the ones in the window boxes have decided not to brave it at all yet.   Usually by now they are giving a spectacular display alongside the narcissus

ducks did  you speakDid you speak?

Nature is not giving up as the drake chats up Ms duck

looking more like winterNeither should we

is it really spring

It’s never too cold for a chat and a stroll, with the lovely  Asheebee

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A Place to Ponder

vejer a place to ponder2

One of my many passions in life is to travel the world and explore new places and with holidays being scarce when you work full time I always like to try and venture to new territories for new explorations.  Apart from my home country of Ireland, that has entrenched in me an unbreakable bond,  there is one place that keeps drawing me back for visits over the years.   A trip during the summer just gone confirmed to me that this is the sort of  place I could grow old in.  It is the pristine white hilltop town of Vejer de la frontera, built by the Moors and preserved by the Spanish.  With flowers a plenty blooming in every street, every courtyard and roof terrace,  in bright vibrant colours,  coupled with the beautiful white backdrop of the town,  it is like waking up on a movie set every day.  A great inspiration for urbanisation – fill it with flowers and the heart will blossom.  Here people do not have gardens but they make use of every available space to create a town full of tiny blooming places, people together enhancing the majestic town.  There is a lot to learn from Spain where living in apartment in an urban environment does not have to mean dank and grey. Vejer is a town united, where tiny blooming places gel together to make one of the prettiest places I have ever visited. It is not just contained to this particularly picturesque town in Spain, nearby towns in the Cadiz region like Conil bloom as well as the larger city of  Seville to the north,  where apartment living does not mean a life without a blooming outside space.

If you look behind and above the blooming rose to the forefront (insert smiley face here)   you will see tiny balconies filled with flowers – no place is too small

vejer balconies in bloom

Where there is a balcony there is a pot and even where there is not!

vejer balconies in bloom2

If you have a verge outside – fill it with pots

vejer blooming street

Never mind deck the halls – deck the streets

vejer blooming street2

Behind closed doors  – You would never expect it but most open up to little havens of flower filled courtyards

vejer courtyard in bloom

vejer let it all hang out

Plants cascade down from roof terraces to meet up with the potted plants below creating a flowing, fluid flowering facade

vejer cacading roof terrace

Plant it – it will grow.  Tiny terraces planted with big blooming plants

vejer plant it it will grow

With the plants come the wildlife – this little fella was spotted wandering freely around our flower filled patio

vejer iggy and the pot

In nearby Conil this pretty flower fronted bar was beckoning for me to come and sit for a drink

conil blooming bar

conil blooming bar2

Tiny spot blooming beautifully

conil blooming bar3

conil blooming bar4

In Seville tiny balconies were packed with flowers – urban doesn’t have to mean concrete only!

seville fill it with pots

seville have a balcony fill it up

Fill it with Flowers

seville have a balcony fill it up2

Wandering around Seville to see what I can find

seville wandering around

Found it! My city pad

seville ornate balcony

A beautiful ornate balcony to fill with flowers

seville ornate balcony2

Urbanites be inspired

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