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East Clare Community Gardens - Seeds of Hope

Updated: Apr 27, 2020

Seeds of Hope

By Richard O'Gorman

Sometimes it is good to return to the simplicity of life, I recall my days in junior school in the south of England, looking at seeds and marveling at the emergence of a runner bean planted in a jar next to the glass so we could see it bursting out , suddenly Jack and the Beanstalk took on a whole new meaning " I wonder, could it really….I wonder"

Here I am at home in Feakle, in my large garden, lawn, trees, wild areas, and nest boxes, the swallows investigating their usual spot by the back door, the magpies building in the ash tree nearby;  chiffchaff, goldfinch , tits, robins, and the mysterious visits of our night time badgers.

All the while in the new silence of lockdown I tend seeds, young plants and teenage plants in preparation for their journey to the Co - op Garden, hopefully in May. Beetroot, french beans, leeks, courgettes, cucumbers, parsley, basil , cabbage, broccoli and kale. A kindergarden of culinary delights , including lettuce ( which I may plant here and harvest for the cafe when it opens again.)

In the meantime the community garden sleeps, the beds are covered, most already dressed with compost from our composting area or prepared with manure. The tunnels hold old stock from last year, a miracle of nature as it is flourishing once more; I am going to allow some of it to go to seed and save the seed, a good way of ensuring productivity at this time. 

When circumstances allow and with social distancing in mind I will organise a planting day, in the meantime sowing continues. Though I am running out of labels, so recycling is a must, I tried yogurt pots cut into strips, they did not mark easily, then noticed in my recycling shed those green straps you get around briquettes, excellent, perfect for the job, with a permanent marker, cut to whatever length you need, folded in half and popped into the trays or pots.

And another first for me, willow water. I made willow water,  rooting treatment for taking rosemary cuttings. Online it said one third material to two thirds boiled water. I cut young semi hardwood willow shoots into three centimeter lengths, popped those into a jar with the water and left to soak, some say the longer the better.  Its been about a week now sitting in the greenhouse, quite a heady scent off the now richly coloured liquid. But, before I do anything, I think I need to keep watering my rosemary bushes, as they are too dry after this longish spell of dry weather, I need to see a bit of vitality in the growth before I take the cuttings, all in good time.

Keep well and keep safe, plant seeds, breath, stay home, ( Home within yourself, which is a peaceful place to be)


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