News - Page 55

Get to know Ireland's rich apple heritage

Get to know Ireland's rich apple heritage and have a cracking good time at one of the many apple-related events happening around the country this month.

Apple growing is a long tradition in Ireland: local varieties include the crisp and juicy 'Kerry Pippin', tasty red 'Tipperary Pippin' and 'Holstein Cox' bred specially to do well in an Irish climate. Find out more at the Apple Day on 20 October at Peatlands Park in Co. Armagh, in the heart of orchard c...

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Dust off the spade and put your back into some autumn digging:

Dust off the spade and put your back into some autumn digging: with the soil still workable yet nice and damp from the autumn rains, it's the perfect time of year to turn new beds or improve established ones.

There's hot debate over whether or not digging is necessary: many don't dig at all, saying it destroys the soil's structure. Instead, they argue, it's better to let the worms draw a thick mulch of organic matter into the soil naturally.

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The plant of the month for October is the conifer

The plant of the month for October is the conifer, and there's a good reason to be celebrating these beautiful evergreen trees as this week is National Conifer Week.

Chances are you already have a conifer in your garden as they're hugely popular garden trees. Whether you've got a container, tiny city garden or acres of lawn, you'll find a conifer that's just the right shade, texture, shape and size, from low-growing hummocky Pinus mugo to Korean fir wit...

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What to do in the garden in October:

The tang of autumn is in the air and there's a certain urgency creeping in this month, as you've only a few weeks to get the harvest in and settle the garden down for its long winter rest. Here's what to do:

General tasks:
Hold off pruning hedges which have berries, like hawthorn, blackthorn, bramble or dog roses, so birds can enjoy this essential food supply.
Turn compost bins one last time before winter and cover with card...

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It's time to make rosehip syrup

It's time to make rosehip syrup – one of the most nutritious and delicious by-products from one of the most beautiful flowers in the garden.

Roses are best known for their gorgeous flowers, but their hips are pretty too - and incredibly nutritious, with each berry containing more vitamin C than oranges. You'll find plenty of varieties with particularly good hips here in our garden centre in Listowel: favourites include the Scots rose, R. pimpinellifolia...

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What to do in your garden this week:

Job of the week: Feed the compost heap

As you put the garden to bed you'll generate a huge mass of fallen leaves, old crops and cleared material. As long as it's disease free, use it to fill the compost heap, converting green waste into valuable organic soil improver. Chop up woody material as small as possible, and mix different materials together as you fill the bin. In six months you should have a dark, rich, crumbly compost to use through...

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Spread the word on wildlife in your garden

Spread the word on wildlife in your garden and you could help reverse the trend of declining populations and habitat loss, according to the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB). They want you to talk to friends, family and neighbours about the wildlife in your garden in the hope that people will get together to link gardens into Britain's biggest wildlife sanctuary.

A survey carried out by the RSPB found almost three-quarters of us haven't s...

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Meet a red squirrel

Meet a red squirrel at the ever popular Red Squirrel Day this Saturday at Mount Stewart in Newtownards, Co. Down, and we guarantee you'll come away with a quite different view of these little garden escapologists.

The garden's Red Squirrel trail is a good excuse to look around the magnificent grounds as it takes in the path around the lake, the Lily Wood and Rhododendron Hill as well as the glorious formal gardens. On the way you'll find squirrel feeder...

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Gardening is good for your kids – it's official!

Gardening is good for your kids – it's official! A report from researchers in the US has confirmed the mounting evidence that schoolchildren who learn gardening as part of their day-to-day studies eat more healthily and do better in their studies. They found students who get their fingers dirty on a regular basis behave better, too.

As if that wasn't enough, Spanish scientists have also shown that green spaces in city schools improve mental development...

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Extend the season with cloches

Extend the season with cloches and you can carry on growing veg right through till the first frosts. Stock up on your favourite type now, ready to use as soon as temperatures start to fall: whether you prefer convenient, easy-to-use polythene tunnels or rigid and sturdy long row cloches you'll find them in stock in our garden centre here in Listowel.

Put these mobile mini-greenhouses over your plants now they'll trap the last of the sunshine, keeping th...

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