Drumlane Community Garden 2009.
No, it was certainly not an easy year. Three successive summers in which the sun shone fairly regularly in May and June, followed by unremitting, torrential pelting rain! Hardly the conditions you would like to see in a garden and certainly not on Wednesday and Saturday mornings in our Drumlane Community Garden! The more surprising it was to see what this plot of land repaid and the participants usually went home with armfuls of produce! Often we went to Pat Gannon to ask him if he wanted to sell our garden products which were freshly harvested. Pat was and is always willing to do that because he knows that it is good quality stuff.
Many local people have of course noticed that we have a brandnew polytunnel. We are very proud to have one, because it allows us to grow products which in our climate will not do very well outside. So we had different varieties of tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers. The tunnel will also be excellent for sowing and propagation.
We grew sweet corn as well. The new beds were decorated by French Marigolds because this is a very useful companion plant. It more or less protects your tomatoes from being attacked by all kinds of pests and diseases.
The group are key to the success of the project. The companionship, camaraderie and commitment that develops together with the learning element demonstrates the real value of the project. We would like to thank Aisling Blackburn for all the support she has given us. We cannot do without her expertise!
This year the group had 13 paying members. They are:
– Declan Fitzpatrick (He is the key figure of everything!
– Greet van Willigen
– Bert van Willigen
– Una Leddy
– Kathleen Leddy
– Lily O’Connor
– Gill Ledger
– Bernie O’Reilly
– Matt Fitzgerald
– Michael Foley
– Phyllis Janssen
– Kathleen Lennon
– Eugene Gillies
Anne Bradbury has assisted us writing letters and filling in documents. She knows how to choose the right words for various people and organisation.
Una Leddy donated E2000 to Drumlane Community Garden in memory of her late husband Andrew. During his life Andrew worked tirelessly for the Drumlane community. We are extremely grateful to Una for this generous gift and will certainly utilise it as sensibly as possible.
On Wednesday December 9th we had our final meeting of the year. We discussed what went right and what went wrong, things we could improve on.
Plans for next year
– establish proper compost area
– signs to let people know where we are and how to find us
– develop a flower garden to bring more colour
– develop the polytunnell
– make some raised beds
– drain the herb garden
Finally it is good to mention the open day; for once the weather was great and the Sponsored Walk had a great turn-out. Our stall displayed lots of produce and the proceeds far exceeded our expectations.
Next year we would like to welcome many people to come and see our garden. Only when Drumlane Community Garden is really in the heart of the community it will flourish.
Of course new members will be more than welcome. Many hands make light work!
Next year there will again be a gardening course. It will be held in the Community Centre on 3 nights in March and 2 in April. If you need more information do not hesitate to phone Declan Fitzpatrick. His number: 049-9522788 or 087-2367628.
To end this review a text we came across while visiting a magnificent garden in New Zealand last January:
Land and Man
In any society owning land is no more than becoming a temporary caretaker and care we must or the earth will cease to support our needs.
Bert van Willigen