I have a lovely garden in the village of Quin in County Clare. I have never really had an interest in gardening and I have always just paid somebody to cut the grass and do some basic maintenance on the place. That has all changed in the last two years. Indeed, it all changed pre-Covid-19, as I was becoming ever more interested in biodiversity.
I joined Burrenbeo several years ago and went to a few of their events. Then I joined Seedsavers a little more recently, and I attend several of their courses, so my knowledge and enthusiasm grew. In 2019 there was a lot of focus in the media on the National Pollinator Plan. During Heritage Week, I went to several talks and workshops about different aspect of the plan, talks and walks in Ennis, at a garden centre in Galway, and in the Burren.
I usually travel a great deal, as I work on election observation around the world, but, being grounded, I tackled the garden last year. I let all of the place grow wild for biodiversity. There is about half an acre of grass, through which I have cut grass paths. I got assistance at first but then this year I bought myself a lawnmower and did the work myself.
Several years ago I had gotten a quotation for CELT nurseries to plant native hedges, but I did not proceed with that. So, last year I got 30 native fruit trees from Seedsavers and then this year I got hedges planted with several hundred indigenous trees.
I have ever greater diversity in creatures in the garden, butterflies, shrews, lots of birds, including my first ever pair of goldcrests, and endless insects. I have only pictures of a few, a I am not particularly enthusiastic about taking photographs.
I have some mature apple trees, about 60 years old, and now lots of young trees, and well as lots of blackberries, elderberries and hawthorn. I am delighted with the place and intend to continue following advice to promote diversity. This is now my second year of having the garden thus, with just one cut of grass annually. Last year it was cut in the middle of September, the grass left to lie for a week, and then collected. This year I had to travel to Canada for the election for most of September. Now I am back and having the grass cut on Tuesday next.
I could continue for ages to relate my new enthusiasm for biodiversity in the garden. But instead I am attaching a sample of some photographs of the place.
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