Dying art of the turf-cutter

Dying art of the turf-cutter

If you’re travelling country roads from West Cork to Co Donegal these days, you will almost certainly meet tractor trailers clamped high with black turf for ...

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We have a lot to learn about nature but pond newts a start

We have a lot to learn about nature but pond newts a start

Last Sunday afternoon, I went to see newts in a pond created by an ecologically-minded doctor and his family in West Cork.

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A little bit of nature a week is good for you

A little bit of nature a week is good for you

Trees along Dublin’s thoroughfares face a death sentence. In streets choked with vehicles, it’s proposed to cut them down so that buses can operate more ...

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Islands of Ireland: Last Buss to imaginary island

Islands of Ireland: Last Buss to imaginary island

In the realms of the imagination, more is usually better. Why restrict ourselves to one make-believe island?

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Gardeners' guide to what's on in Munster and beyond

The Irish National Stud and Gardens, Kildare, in association with ISNA, holds its first plant fair on Saturday, August 10, from 11am to 4pm. Admission €5, which ...

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All you can eat: Couple open magical edible garden

All you can eat: Couple open magical edible garden

Nettle cake, anyone? The way forager and garden designer Kloë Wood describes her version of it, you’ll be asking for seconds.

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Gardening on a budget? We'll show you how

Gardening on a budget? We'll show you how

Keen to boost her borders without breaking the bank, Hannah Stephenson consults Mark Gregory of Channel 5’s ‘The Great Gardening Challenge’.

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Gardening: Be skincare-savvy for summer

Gardening: Be skincare-savvy for summer

Prevention is so much better than cure, says Fiann Ó Nualláin, who offers gardeners timely advice on guarding face and body against those potentially ...

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In these times of climate change, choose plants to weather all conditions

In these times of climate change, choose plants to weather all conditions

It's never been more important to choose flowers and trees according to their environmental needs, says Peter Dowdall

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Step away from the hosepipe: 6 tips to help your garden thrive through a dry summer

Step away from the hosepipe: 6 tips to help your garden thrive through a dry summer

Dry gardening expert Olivier Filippi says aiming for drought-defying plants and techniques is key. By Hannah Stephenson.

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Swifts need nest sites

Swifts need nest sites

One of our summer visiting birds, the swift, can now be seen flying madly, usually round houses and rooftops.

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Islands of Ireland: Welcome to dreamland

Islands of Ireland: Welcome to dreamland

The islet of Rockall captured the public interest last month as the periodic claims of its nearest neighbours (ourselves and Scotland mainly) were laid out in stark ...

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Dividend is        a better option than a carbon tax

Dividend is a better option than a carbon tax

Climate change is the world’s most urgent problem. The key centrist proposal for tackling it — in keeping with the prevailing neoliberal dispensation ...

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Gazing at hedgerows a much under-rated summer activity

Gazing at hedgerows a much under-rated summer activity

On these midsummer days of this (mostly) lovely midsummer weather, there’s so much to look at when one goes walking that it’s almost impossible to get ...

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9 expert tips to transform your greenhouse from messy junkyard to rustic retreat

9 expert tips to transform your greenhouse from messy junkyard to rustic retreat

Hannah Stephenson reveals how to banish the greenhouse clutter and create a horticultural haven instead.

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Mind the gap: How to fill your garden borders when spaces appear in summer

Mind the gap: How to fill your garden borders when spaces appear in summer

As early-flowering summer plants fade, you’ll have gaps to fill in your borders. Hannah Stephenson shows you how.

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Maligned sitka has its values

Maligned sitka has its values

Which species of tree should be grown in Ireland, one of the best countries in the world for forestry?

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Islands of Ireland: A horse of another colour

Islands of Ireland: A horse of another colour

Waiting for the rising tide on the Fergus Estuary in the traditional fishing boat he built himself known as a gandelow, Co Clare man Fintan Ginnane is at ease with ...

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Cold-blooded reason for feverish attack

Cold-blooded reason for feverish attack

Why do sick animals develop high temperatures?

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Painted Lady crosses desert and sea to brighten Irish day

Painted Lady crosses desert and sea to brighten Irish day

Another lovely day but here on the south coast we’ve also had the mixed blessing of sea mists and overcast when the rest of the country is toasting and mainland ...

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Zapping invaders? We’ll show you how

Zapping invaders? We’ll show you how

Getting rid of three of the worst weeds in your patch can be quite a chore, says Hannah Stephenson

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Geraniums steal the show

Geraniums steal the show

Peter Dowdall reports on a budding success story and how plant gifts make gardens more interesting

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Keeper of the flame on Roancarrigmore IslandThis story is enriched with multi-media content

Keeper of the flame on Roancarrigmore Island

A mere speck compared to the giant Bere Island beside it, and into one of whose fields it would easily fit, Roancarrigmore Island is of such diminutive size that ...

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Danes put in their spoke

Danes put in their spoke

In penning this column over many years, there has been quite a bit of reaction to certain issues raised but nothing to come near the response to last week’s ...

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Visiting Namibia raisesan ethical issue

Visiting Namibia raisesan ethical issue

Take up the White Man’s burden, Send forth the best ye breed, Go bind your sons to exile, To serve your captives’ need.

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Deep sea whale watching provides some poetry in motion

Deep sea whale watching provides some poetry in motion

Early last week, I went with a group of summer visitors for a morning’s whale-watching with Mark Gannon, owner-skipper of Courtmacsherry Atlantic Whale and ...

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Gardening: How lemon grass can add zest to life

Gardening: How lemon grass can add zest to life

Fiann Ó Nualláin is impressed with this fragrant plant that is both ornamental and useful.

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Peter Dowdall shares his top 4 flower picks to add a splash of summer colour to your garden

Peter Dowdall shares his top 4 flower picks to add a splash of summer colour to your garden

TAKE your eye off the garden in autumn or winter and it can be quite forgiving, as the growth rate slows and then stops for a while before everything starts again ...

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Why do zebras have stripes?

Why do zebras have stripes?

Writing in the Journal of Natural History, husband-and-wife team Alison and Stephen Cobb claim that the iconic colour pattern helps regulate body temperature.

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Send a delegation to Copenhagen to learn all about cycle lanesThis story is enriched with multi-media content

Send a delegation to Copenhagen to learn all about cycle lanes

While a hopeful start has already been made in providing such lanes here, we still have a long way to go to catch up with the Scandinavians.

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How nature can work wonders for body and soul

How nature can work wonders for body and soul

Studies have found that garden environments offer a host of physical and mental health benefits. Hannah Stephenson finds out more

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Identifying trees was once part of countryman’s education

Identifying trees was once part of countryman’s education

The story of the macrocarpa, aka Monterey cypress, is intriguing.

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Islands of Ireland: To everything tern, tern, tern

Islands of Ireland: To everything tern, tern, tern

From a distance, the standout feature on this lacustrine island in Lady’s Island Lake, Co Wexford, is of a solitary Monterey pine tree which dominates the ...

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