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Mags Coughlan's blog

I’m not giving up on summer yet!

I have high hopes that weather warnings are on hold ‘til winter and there will be enough sunshine to ripen and sweeten the garden’s bounty. 
This time of year the main job in the garden is staying ahead of the weeds that are growing with the same vigor as the crops.  Amongst the produce in season are courgettes, peas and mangetout beans, blackcurrants, raspberries and peaches. Yes! Peaches – growing in the warmest, most protected (and admired!) corner of the garden. 

The Hungry Gap

Much of the work being done now in the garden is in preparation for things to come! Most of the garden is empty now except for perennial vegetables like sea kale, asparagus and rhubarb. But in the wings…or the glasshouse….seedlings are beginning to show promise.  In modules and pots is sown lettuce, Japanese greens, oriental mustards, brussel sprouts, red and green cabbages. In gutters, the tender tips of mangetout and peas are popping up. 

As Spring Marches On

Emerging from the hibernation of January and the potential of the growing year ahead begins to germinate! The first demand is to feed the soil that gave us so much last year – the ‘heavy’ machinery was rolled in and made light work of spreading well-rotted manure over the entire garden and ploughed. 

Garden Blog August 2014

April’s showers seem so long ago as we work in August’s dusty garden where we’re busy watering sweet peas, summer lettuce, courgettes and pumpkins. Months have flown by and the countdown has begun in earnest to the Ballymaloe Garden Festival.

Garden Blog April 2014

April showers! And wind. And frost. And fog. But April days are getting longer – just in time as it’s getting very busy in the walled garden.

Ensuring the soil is healthy and fertile is a priority and so the entire garden has had a liberal sprinkling of well-rotted manure. As well as adding nitrogen, the manure increases the soil’s organic matter and keeps the gardener’s biceps in shape!

Busy times in the Walled Garden!

November in the Ballymaloe walled garden and it's still very busy. We're busy harvesting for the kitchen - brussels sprouts, beetroot, leeks and swedes. The recent frost has improved the taste of the curly kale and cavolo nero by reducing some of the bitterness. And of course, we're still picking winter lettuce and the glasshouse has plenty of salad leaves - orientals, New Zealand spinach, claytonia and rocket.

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