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I like to know if anyone is looking at my blog so please comment, if you can think of something, to say or e-mail me at madsmckeever@eircom.net

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Been to Bloom

We paid a flying visit to Bloom to see Sophie von Maltzen's show garden at 'Bloom' When we arrived they were just finishing it off for the judging on Wednesday. Sophie and her team looked tired but the end result was great. 

This is a garden you could be at home in, potter about in after a days work, and commune with your chickens. It is a non competitive, unpretentious garden and Sophie is looking for a community to adopt and love it. Is there anybody out there?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Virtual farm walk

The real thing will be better

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Work Horse Workshop at Brown Envelope Seeds on 30th May 2009

Here are Sandra and Tim with Henry (the horse) at home moving muck around. You could learn how to do this by coming to their workshop the day before the open day. Henry will be demonstrating his skills on Sunday 31st too.  

In connection with the Brown Envelope Seeds Open Day a Workshop on Working with Horses will be held on Saturday, 30th May 2009, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

This course is aimed at anybody who is interested in learning more about working horses.

The cost for this two-hour introduction course will be €10.

Booking is essential, as places are limited.

Topics covered in this course:
a.. Different work horse breeds
b.. Types of harness
c.. Types of horse drawn machinery
d.. Caring for work horses
e.. Training work horses
f.. Different tasks work horses can do
We will also do some practical exercises with my work horse Henry (depending on the weather...).

To book and for more information: email Sandra at bluedoor@eircom.net

Friday, May 15, 2009

Open Day

Having got over the excitement of the Baltimore Fiddle Festival, we are getting down to the serious business of getting ready for the Open day, to which all of you bloggers are invited. In fact everyone is welcome. It is on Sunday 31st May at 3pm.  

There will be a walk around the gardens, where all the seeds are produced, the farm where we produce organic beef, and the young broad-leaf forestry plantation.

Sandra Schmid will give a working horse demonstration by using Henry and a demonstration on how to make a willow lobster pot by Nigel Towse.

Tea will be provided in the newly glazed drying room.

A plant sale will be held in aid of Growing Awareness, please bring your spare plants.

There is no charge for the event. All are welcome. 

No dogs please. 

Directions: Follow Turk Head sign-posts from Church Cross.

Monday, May 11, 2009


I liked the e-mail from Geraldine and Nicholas for its directness. "We work Monday to Friday between 4 and 5 hours per day." and on an impulse, accepted their offer of help. Sometimes WOOFers are great and sometimes its like running a bed and breakfast, but Geraldine and Nicholas were great. They liked painting, and painted all the gates in the yard, the doors of the house the old milk churns that now decorate the entrance to the farm and lots more.  they weren't as enthusiastic about cutting a path through the forestry, for the open day, and but did a great job all the same. They also weeded the potatoes very efficiently. They were both fine pianists and while they were here picked up the fiddle and within minutes were playing "Twinkle Twinkle little star", I sure it took me a week. They have gone off to Kerry now, but I will think of them as I water the plants in the churns.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Going to Bloom

Sophie Von Maltzen is an artist a Landscape Architect teaching in UCD. She has designed a very innovative garden for Bloom and has asked us to provide some of the plants. So, the cut and come again pea project has been transformed and the pots are now being groomed for 'Bloom"
As is this pot of parsnips which started out as a germination test. 

We are also growing some small plants to fill her glass covered, patio table which covers a raised spring vegetable bed. What  brilliant idea, I want one.

Agricultural Biodiversity or Drama Queens

We recently acquired two highland cross heifers, from Nout Cremers. Actually the grandmother of one and the great grandmother of the other was a Jersey cow I had here years ago. I sold her Limousin cross calf to Nout who kept her as a suckler. These two heifers are from her and her daughter, by a purebred highland bull. They are the two animals in the center eying us warily. I couldn't get any closer to them. They are getting over the trip in the truck, which was a bit traumatic for them, (and Nout).