October summed up.

October saw a lot of sunshine and quite warm weather here in the West of Ireland. We have been busy finishing up work on our conservatory and have started to transform the space in front of it into a garden full of stones and colourful plants. We are blessed to have so many stones turning up in the soil whenever we dig a hole to plant a tree or shrub and our plan is to really show of their beauty in this space. There will be some paths snaking through the space, manly created from big flag stones with some gravel. Bigger stones and rocks will form built up areas in between the paths creating planting spaces for our many Japanese Acers and other plants that have lived in pots for the last few years.

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Our new stone wall with planting spaces. We are just trying out possible positions for our acers at the moment.

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The centre of our new garden taking shape.

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Stone steps to the higher level.

It is the last part of the garden to be worked on and we all feel it is the most exciting one. We are hoping for a beautiful, calming space to be enjoyed all throughout the year. It will be lovely to sit in the conservatory and look out at the plants on any rainy or cold day we might have. We are making the floor space in the conservatory very similar to the space outside with big flag stones to be set into the floor and areas for planting in between. The idea is to create and indoor and outdoor garden in the same way and blur the boundaries between inside and outside.

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As we were lucky enough to come across some big sash windows as seconds in a local joinery, the two gardens will hopefully feel like one on any warm day when we can open the windows up, feel the air, smell the flowers and get a few inquisitive bumblebees to come in for a visit.

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We have also been working on our latest bottle wall for the conservatory in the last month.

In other parts of the garden we have been weeding, harvesting, mulching and enjoying all the autumn hues on trees and shrubs. Our main circle is looking well with perennials, grasses and shrubs filling in all around it. When we moved in nearly four years ago the garden was a very one-dimensional space especially in winter but now there are many plants creating interesting shapes, silhouettes and shadows. You can read about our main garden circle in the category; elemental circle and look at pictures of the garden evolving over the last couple of years.

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East

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South

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West

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North

We decided to add a standing stone to our smaller circle in the herb garden and we are very happy with the result.

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We were excited to pick our first ever cooking pears last month and some very tasty in a crumble. We are planning to use a few more for poached ginger pear, a fond childhood memory.

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All in all it has been a beautiful month in the garden with a few late bees buzzing around, lots of birds visiting our feeders and a couple of frosty mornings. The nasturtiums and fuchsias are still going strong and we are looking forward to the next few weeks when the planting of our new stone garden will start in earnest.

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