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Rachel's Journal

Rachel's Journal

Last Post 234 days 19 hours ago

Book Launch with Gerry Daly, 2 December

24 November 2017 11:42:11

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I would like to invite you to the official launch of Rachel Darlington's "Journal of an Irish Garden" on Saturday 2nd Decembe 2017.
The event will be launched by Wexford's very own, Gerry Daly, and will take place in Bunclody's coolest venue, the Art Bank, from 17:30 where Rachel will do a reading from the book and will be signing copies. The book is for sale at €13.
Hope to see many of you there.

Journal of an Irish Garden (with forward by Helen Dillon) is a collection of columnist and plantsperson Rachel Darlington’s articles in the Irish Garden magazine from 2007 to 2015. It details her development from amateur gardener to owner of a garden open to the public. This book is, in essence, a horticultural journey. It is an odyssey of discovery, knowledge and fulfilment, while taking the not-so-occasional foray into the realms of iffy dress-sense, hypothermia and muck. This journey contains elements that most gardeners will recognise from their own endeavours.

"We follow the author’s development as a gardener and that of her garden, Douentza, which is a joy to visit, full of well-grown unusual plants and one of the up-and-coming Irish gardens."
—Helen Dillon, the Dillon Garden

"What really makes the book for me is the clear and ever-present love of plants. From the mundane to the rare, the plant mix is eclectic and the book peppered with handy tips for growing them."
—Jimi Blake, Hunting Brook Gardens

Amaryllis After Flowering & Greenhouse

11 February 2017 11:23:39

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And here I am postponing going out to the garden again with a second journal for today.

I guess I'm hoping that moss will scrape itself and those perennials will cut themselves back!

Anyway, I thought the following two videos might prove useful.

The first is about what to do with hippeastrums after flowering and the second is a look around my greenhouse in winter.

Four Easy Steps To Reflowering Amaryllis/Hippeastrum - YouTube

Midwinter Greenhouse - citrus, cold orchids & lots of succulents

Happy growing!

Ungrateful Wretches & Sowing Seeds

11 February 2017 11:04:42

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Hi folks.

It is quite cold and miserable here and I decided to spend some time scraping moss from my drive rather than dealing with the cold earth.

But I have been doing a bit in the borders, where I realised strobilanthes had become a thug and needed serious curtailing. Two years ago I made the mistake of putting its stems on the compost and I had lots of strobilanthes in my lasagne bed last year. Thankfully it wasn't too hard to sort. When I think of how I nursed that plant from seed and this is how the ungrateful wretch repays me!

Anyway, I've been sowing a few easy seeds. Some beautiful sweet pea that were gifted to me last year at an open day and some amazing blue China asters. Being true to form, I made videos about both and I'll post the links below.

How To Sow Sweet Pea - easiest & most rewarding of all seeds - YouTube

How I Sow Half Hardy or Tender Annuals - blue China asters - YouTube

Happy gardening!

What seasonal tasks would you like videos on?

24 January 2017 21:09:09

Johnstown Get-Together Video

12 January 2017 10:40:44
Johnstown Get-Together Video

Johnstown Get-Together Video

Hello folks,

I just wanted to say that I too was at Johnstown last Saturday, despite a rotten cold, and what a wonderful day it was too. Hats off to all the organisers!

Can you believe, I didn't take a single photo on the day but I did make this little video, which I'm sure you will enjoy.

Hazel, you were recognised on YouTube from the video as the lady whose garden I visited last year ;-) I wonder who I'll inflict a visit on this year!

Snowing heavily here in Wexford today so stay warm, all of you!

Gardening Club Get-Together at Johnstown - plus orchid display - YouTube

My YouTube gardening channel...

Gardening at Douentza - YouTube

Exciting Annuals Talk Bunclody

20 November 2016 00:09:01
Exciting Annuals Talk Bunclody

Exciting Annuals Talk Bunclody

This is just to let you know that I will be giving my talk on Exciting Annuals in Bunclody Library this Thursday 24th November at 7pm.

All welcome.

Autumn Videos

02 November 2016 20:24:26

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Hi folks,

I just thought I would check in to post some links to videos on my YouTube channel that you may find interesting. Unfortunately you will have to copy and paste the link to your browser. Thanks and happy viewing.

Revisisit of Tina's House Plants...


Goodbye Dillon Garden...


Autumn Colour at Douentza


Removing a Stubborn Bush, Using Car & Tow Rope


October Greenhouse


Aeonium Propagation


Greenhouse Set for Winter...


Some Seasonal Videos

06 October 2016 10:29:09
Some Seasonal Videos

Some Seasonal Videos

Hi everyone,

I hope those of you who love autumn, like Fran, are enjoying it. And those of you who dislike it, like Deborah, are getting through the job list :)

My YouTube channel reached a landmark 4,000 subscribers recently and I thought I would post links to a few of the recent videos that you may find useful.

The first one is about taking salvia cuttings - a job for now - and the other two are about my son's TY mini company, where he has decided to sell airplants. So proud of him :)

How To Propagate Salvia - taking sage cuttings in autumn - YouTube

Josh's Transition Year Mini Company - selling airplants - YouTube

Josh's Transition Year Mini Company - airplant unboxing - YouTube

May I encourage as many of you as possible to join me on YouTube and subscribe for free gardening videos every two days.

Gardening at Douentza - YouTube

50 Shades Darker

20 September 2016 10:07:29
50 Shades Darker

50 Shades Darker

Well, we're all looking forward to the new 50 Shades of Grey film in next year but, just to tide us over, here's the gardener's version...

Fifty Shades Darker - gardener's spoof version - YouTube

Hazel's Garden in Laois

18 September 2016 14:28:36
Hazel's Garden in Laois

Hazel's Garden in Laois

Hello, folks.

In July I had the pleasure of visited the garden of garden.ie member Hazel (TheH). Here is the video I made of her garden, Gortnalee Gardens in Laois.

Hazel's Garden in July, Gortnalee Gardens, Co Laois - YouTube

Madeira Fire

15 September 2016 12:37:16
Madeira Fire

Madeira Fire

I know I have posted about this subject before but I have since made an appeal video so would like to post it here.

The Jardim Orquídea in Funchal dates back 110 years and had been maintained over four generations of the Pregetter family. It was considered to be one of the largest private collections in the world, with many of the specimens extinct elsewhere. Only 2,000 plants are thought to be recoverable and the future of the garden remains uncertain.

110 Year Old Orchid Garden Burnt To The Ground - Jardim Orquídea, Madeira - YouTube

An appeal to raise £50,000 to assist the restoration of Jardim Orquídea is in place. If you would like to help by making a donation, please visit the garden website at...

Jardim Orquídea - how to donate

Thank you.

Dillon Garden in August

06 September 2016 10:31:33
Dillon Garden in August

Dillon Garden in August

Here is a video on The Dillon Garden in August this year. It is my 4th Dillon Garden video so, if you've never been but have been watching, you should be getting familiar with it by now.

This garden is open on Sundays in September (check the website) and then it will finally close. Enjoy!

The Dillon Garden, Ireland - August of closing year, my favourite area - YouTube

PS Did you notice a flash of the Dillon Garden in the intro to the new Gardeners' World series? A feature should be coming soon. The team came to film the same day as the July video I made so Helen was out to lunch with Monty when I was videoing her garden ;-)

South African Review

26 August 2016 17:13:57

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I am delighted to learn that my book, Journal of an Irish Garden, was reviewed in the South African Cape Times on 12th August. See photos.

And a reminder that the book is for sale from the following site, in case anyone does not yet have their copy...

Journal of an Irish Garden by Rachel Darlington (Paperback) — Lulu IE

Some Videos

26 August 2016 17:00:52
Some Videos

Some Videos

As before, I enclose links to some of my outdoor gardening videos that people on garden.ie may find interesting.

There is lots more available on my YouTube channle, Gardening at Douentza. I am very pleased to see an increase in Irish viewers over the month of August and hope it will continue.


Paddy & Mary Tobin's Garden In Summer - Waterford - YouTube

How To Get A Jungle Effect With Hardy Plants - YouTube

Cinnamon For Garden Use - Echium wildpretii & pelargoniums - YouTube

Repotting & Dividing A Reluctant Agave With A Long History - YouTube

Propagating Hedychium greenei From Bulbils - YouTube

Madeira Fire

26 August 2016 16:43:32

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Heartbreaking news. The recent Madeira fires have destroyed Madeira's most beautiful orchid garden and one of the largest private orchid collections in the world. It was more than 100 years old.

I enclose a link to my video of this beautiful place last February and one of the devastating photos from today. Please share and consider donating to rebuild.

Best Madeira Orchid Haven - Jardim Orquídea (Pregetter's) - YouTube

The Jardim Orquídea Website & How To Donate


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