Six-on-Saturday: February Week 4

I like to notice a tiny flower, yet it is the overall structure of the place that allows micro-climates to establish. That’s pure horse$&1t, isn’t it?

It’s been another very dry week here in Abbeyside. Days were colder, and nights colder still. I managed an hour or more (in the garden) most days, so things are taking shape. Still no powerwashing though. Any willing volunteers out there? Surely, you’d come away with a plant or two? Terms and conditions apply.

Here’s the shape of things in the garden on the fourth Saturday of the February…

1. Plant Of The Week: Primrose

It’s easy to lose sight of things, so I want to take a look at the big picture first. I’ve a habit of noticing a tiny flower, yet it is the overall structure of the place that allows small micro-climates to establish. (That’s pure horse$&1t, isnt it?) Put another way, I’m going to nominate my Plant Of The Week while not forgetting the other supporting actors.

There are many primroses in flower right now. Official botanical name is Primula Vulgaris. This name derives from two latin words meaning “first rose”. In Irish it’s name is sabhaircín (pronounced sour-keen).

Ancient primrose lore…

  • Pig lard and primrose were combined to create a salve or ointment for burns. In Cork a tea made of primroses was used to treat insomnia
  • Ancient Celtic wisdom associates seeing a large patch of primroses with a gateway or portal into the fairy realms
  • To promote good milk production in their cows, our farming forebears rubbed primroses on their cows’ udders on May 1st.
  • Primroses placed on a doorstep were said to encourage the fairies to bless the house and all who lived there.

(Information from IrishAmericanMom. Com)

2. Nesting Material

During the week I made a start at cutting back the many potted grasses around the garden. As I was doing so, it struck me to keep the cut grass for birds who are nest-building. Price of materials has gone through the roof, so they’ll be very grateful. I used sharp scissors to cut everything to small pieces and scattered them in a sheltered corner. Over the coming weeks, it’s likely that birds will find this bounty and grab a beakload at a time. I’ll grin with satisfaction knowing I’ve done my little bit to help them along.

Starting top left:

  • Select grasses for cutting
  • Scissors or secateurs
  • Collect snips
  • Spread snips in a sheltered corner

Marion clipped my hair what little hair I’ve left, and I scattered the scraps in same sheltered spot. Birds will find and make good use of.

3. Cycling

Ridley Cross Trail with matching daffodils.

Last Sunday I got out once again for three hours of banter and fun. We’ve had three dry weeks so I’ve no excuses. Here’s the data, which shows everything bar the banter. The fun is also not available digitally, yet I’ve got it locked inside my head.

Click/tap HERE

Here’s the Captain’s Report:

G3 Sunday Spin had 12 starting out, our biggest group in quite some time with the welcome return of yet more familiar faces! 👏 On what was definitely a lovely spring morning we headed out the Bog Road and onto Cappoquin via Villierstown. Turing left for Camphire Bridge and arriving in Tallow where we had the coffee and a few buns, allegedly! Refuelled the Group headed up the Tallow hill and returned home via Ballyduff and Lismore with a lovely tail wind for a fast-paced finish. A very enjoyable 85km.

4.  Just One Forget-Me-Not

There will be a profusion of tiny purple/blue forget-me-nots in March and April, but the good news is the very first little flower has appeared. It is about half a centimetre. I’d have missed it but for the fact that I went to Specsavers recently. Once again below, I’ve put together four photographs, starting top left with the big picture view and zooming in further each time.

5. Sustenance

Gardening and cycling demand seriously good nutrition. Most mornings I make myself a mug of Cacao. Here’s the recipe:

  • Pure Cacao Block from Sunfleck Ireland shop in Dungarvan. Thank you Louise.
  • Mug of hot drink. It’s normally a 50/50 mix of oat and hazelnut, rather than milk which doesn’t do anything for me
  • Pinch of cinammon
  • Spoon of local honey. Thanks PJ.

Clockwise top left:

  • As a special treat on Saturdays, I add a teaspoon of brandy to the recipe above.
  • Aldi do good flowers. Not exactly sure how that got in the photo! Photobombing carnations!
  • Decent gardening breakfast: boiled egg, Dun Bakery sourdough bread topped with goats’ cheese from Wolfgang at Farmers’ Market, half an avocado (mashed) and hummus.
  • Good coffee. Beans from Aldi or Lidl.

There’s not much gardening there, yet I’m including it because it’s part of my pre-gardening Saturday routine.

6. If Guinness Did Flower Arranging

Guinness glass

No description needed.

Thought for the week:

Summary of Changes

You can expect the following:

  • 5 garden items
  • 1 bike
  • 1 collage / PipCamera / FotoFunia alternative reality
  • 1 philosophical quote… While I have you reading, I’ll slip in something heavy, just to balance my mischievous nature
  • Continued fun and a bit of blackguarding
  • Posted publicly to enable sharing

Other Six-on-Saturday Participants

I’m not the only one, but I’m a rebel, in that I do not stick to the plan as outlined by Jim.

Once you get to Jim’s Garden article (above), you’ll find links in the comments to many other SOSers. You’ll need hours and hours, but very worthwhile. After all, it is The Season of Lent!

Final Thought

I offer sincere thanks to 22 readers last week who shared my Six-on-Saturday. On the strength of that, I’ve about a dozen new followers that I know of. Buíochas mór.
To all of last week’s Gomorrah 22, you’ve done your bit! No need to make a habit of sharing, unless you find an extra-special article you’d like to put out there!

You are presented with a free read, and I hope you enjoy. But ask yourself this question… Am I happy to read Páraig’s Six-on-Saturday but not to spread the word? Am I contributing in any small way to this entertainment? Like the fella in Gomorrah, if I could get a dozen good men readers to share the article, I’d be beside myself! That’s how social media works. Are you just soaking it up or are you willing to be an active participant? I have lofty expectations.


Click the first PHOTOGRAPH and swipe right or left.


Author: Páraig

Changing my mind, one thought at at a time. Garden, bike and writing can be key. Íar-mhúinteoir le Gaeilge.

14 thoughts on “Six-on-Saturday: February Week 4”

  1. Good Morning Páraig. An inspiring post, once again. I’m hoping to get out for a shorter bike ride (than you) this week. I’m working on a route to a relative without using the lethal main roads. It involves the winding canal towpath instead which provides better scenery, but rough conditions. I chuckled at the ‘thought for the week’ about Lent.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can’t encourage rebelliousness. Before I know it, people will be drooling over your breakfast picture, posting one of their own to show they live just as well, then you’ll be back with a lunch picture and before you know it, a gardening meme has become a food meme.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jealous that you can go for a bike ride of any length. I am a fair weather bicyclist and the daytime temps will not be the 10 C I require to enjoy bicycling for a while. Santa brought me a new bike, so I am getting excited for that! It is sweet that you are thinking of the birds. I cut lengths of old string from my bean pole and leave it for the birds. This year I will put out milkweed down that I saved from my seed pods (My husband does not want milkweed colonies all over the yard, so I save the seeds to scatter in approved locations and the down for the birds. I have some new grasses, but they are baby plants so not much nesting material there yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Is milk weed same as Achillea? Also, my Santa Cruz friend refers to garden as her yard. Yard here is a scrapheap area close to house! 😜
      Enjoy the Santa-bike when time comes. Yes, 10 degrees is a good plan.


      1. Hi Páraig,

        Milkweed is Asclepias, host to adorable monarch butterfly larvae. I have A. incarnata, tuberosa, and verticillata. Monarchs prefer A. syriaca, but I had 20 caterpillars on two incarnata – nothing on the other two, but insects enjoyed the flowers all the same.
        Funny how language evolves in different locations. Here a yard is generally the space around your house where usually grass is growing with some trees and shrubs. A garden implies more hands on efforts to grow specific crops, could be fruits, veggies, or flowers, and could be artistically landscaped to include lawn. My garden is in the backyard, and is not artistically designed, but it is beautiful to me. The husband feels that I cram too many plants into too small a space. He envisions the garden as a commercial farm with rows of crops. I told him that method requires too much weeding, and besides, I grow more than we can eat already!

        Liked by 1 person

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