Time to shake off the cobwebs

Posted on: 17th January, 2017

Category: Home, Garden & Environment

Contributor: Ruby Harte

Ruby Harte (a.k.a Mags Riordan) has been a professional florist for over 12 years. Ruby runs a family owned nursery, Bumble Bee Farm in Castledonovan, Drimoleague and is deeply concerned about the protection and cultivation of nature and its habitats.

‘Happy New Year’ – it’s a funny old saying really. When does one end and when does a new one start? Depending on your beliefs you could be saying it a few times a year, for instance ‘Samhain’ marked the end of the old Celtic year. The winter solstice is another, with the mortal wounding of the Holly King and the rise again of the Oak King, Yule being one of the names for this festival, where the burning of the ‘log’ continued for twelve days. Our modern new year fits in nicely with this one. Then we have the Chinese New Year, January 28 for 2017; it changes with the new moon and can be any time from the end of January to the end of February. For me it’s when the snowdrops and crocuses are flowering well and the days are growing longer – there is a real sense of rebirth and while it will still be cold and dreary, the signs are there; birds beginning to make nests and winter visitors are leaving and some are returning. It’s usually closer to February for us here on the farm before we really get to feel it. It’s not a date on a calendar but a sense or feeling that winter is over, time to shake off the cobwebs and really get moving again, I understand the frantic nature of birds building nests – time is ticking. I embrace the energy I receive without fail at that time of year because I know it will invigorate me and propel me forward; it’s like a dog straining at the leash.

I must say thank you to all of you for letting me know you enjoy my ramblings about life here on the farm and thank you for your suggestions regarding content. I’ve taken them on board and will endeavour to address them by going into a little more detail about our cultivation methods and why we select the varieties we do. If there are any other suggestions, please feel free to contact me I’d only be too delighted to hear from you.

With that, for those of you new to my article, we are an organically-run flower farm in West Cork. We cultivate a beautiful range of unusual seasonal flowers for weddings and events but we are also Ireland’s only dedicated edible flower farm. We don’t just use organic guidelines, we practice it as a way of life, in-so-far as we think about what we do and its cause and effect with all jobs that are carried out here, from pruning times to deadheading to digging over beds. Working in harmony with nature in a sustainable manner is deeply important to us. We are thoughtful and mindful of all our actions and respect all the flora and fauna that reside with us.

We are expanding our edible flower business and replanting our new tunnels and reorganising our old ones. It’s a slow job (I think our age is starting to catch up with us) but boy will it be worth it. In my mind’s eye, it’s truly magical, roll on the summer. We are also all about local and local produce. There is such a wealth of talented producers here on our doorstep – from a floral point of view there’s Lydia Busby’s Vintage Cut Flowers in Rosscarbery, Ruth Fortune in Glandore and Hanako in Ballingeary – all offering something a little different but beautiful none-the-less.

I’ve rambled on a bit and said very little about farm life this month but I will have more relevant content next month. For now wishing you all the very best for 2017.

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Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition 23 February 2018

The inaugural Ballineen Foróige Young Engineers Exhibition will take place in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen this Friday 23rd February. As part of Engineers Week 2018, leaders and members of Ballineen Foróige Club have organised an exhibition which will showcase a diverse and exciting range of engineering projects that have been undertaken by members of the club over the last few weeks, with the aid of leaders and a number of local engineers.

With the aid of local pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, along with the support of STEAM Education, a UCC based company focused on promoting science, technology, engineering, arts, and maths subjects in primary schools, Ballineen Foróige has been engaging members and leaders in all things engineering over the last six weeks. From researching, designing, and prototyping a project based on local problems, to participating in various workshops on coding and careers in engineering, Ballineen Foróige have been extremely busy in preparation for the exhibition this coming Friday night.

On the night itself, Michael Loftus, Head of Engineering at CIT, Fintan Goold, Manager at Eli Lilly and All-Ireland Cork winning Footballer, along with Geraldine Coughlan of GCA Architects & Designers, a local business, will act as judges on the night, evaluating the different engineering projects and offering some advice to the members of the club. Also in attendance will be the CEO of Foróige Seán Campbell, along with a number of local councillors, TD’s and Senators.

Leading the team of Ballineen Foróige leaders organising the event, is Rebecca Dwyer, a bioprocess engineer at Eli Lilly. Rebecca recently became a leader in the club and says that Ballineen Foróige Young Engineer Exhibition 2018 “promises to be a fun, challenging and rewarding experience for all involved and we look forward to welcoming parents, relatives, friends and members of the public to the exhibition and film screening on the evening of Friday 23rd February.” Overall, there are twelve projects entered in the exhibition. One project, led by Cian Kennefick and Charlie Nolan, members of the starting out club, examines the possibility of installing speed ramps on the road near local primary school. Fourteen-year-old Charlie says he got involved in the project as it was something to do and it gets you thinking. Cian says the most exciting part of the project was the building of the prototypes.

Both Cian and Charlie, along with thirty other members of the club will display their projects this coming Friday 23 February in Gort Mhuire Hall in Ballineen. Doors open at 8pm and the event runs until 10pm. All are welcome to attend, and admission is free. Catering, including tea and coffee, will be provided on the night.
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20th February, 2018  ·  

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Main course

17th February, 2018  ·  

Check out this new upbeat indie-folk track Edges, released today from Inni-K with a video by Myles O'Reilly. Inni-K will be performing at Levis’, Ballydehob on Saturday 24th February, with support from Sam Clague.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1jc2tlH75Q
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16th February, 2018  ·  

Vikings talk in Clonakilty!

“The Viking Gold and Silver Hoards from County Cork” is the topic of the next Dúchas Clonakilty Heritage lecture on Thursday 22nd at the Parish Centre starting at 8pm.

It will be delivered by John Sheehan, senior lecturer in the Archaeology Department, UCC and a former member of the Heritage Council and the Board of the National Museum of Ireland.

The Vikings were an important presence in Ireland for over two centuries. As well as inflicting great terror they were also responsible for introducing urbanism and new economic systems to the country.

In this talk the focus will be on the economy, looking at the gold and silver hoards that were buried in Co. Cork. It will also explore how these hoards were discovered, what happened to them, and where they are now!
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15th February, 2018  ·  

Bandon Toastmasters is a club that helps people overcome Glossophobia, a fear of public speaking. The club is holding a night of inspirational and motivational speakers on February 22 that is a must for anybody wishing to overcome this phobia.
Tickets can be purchased either on the club's facebook page or through eventbrite.

www.eventbrite.ie/e/bandon-toastmasters-presents-ignite-your-potential-tickets-41871052445?aff=es2
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13th February, 2018  ·  

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