Garden work on hot Summer days.

8 Jun


Hi folks! The big news is that we have a polytunnel. Yippee! We bought it from the Galway based Polytunnels Ireland. They arrived yesterday morning at 10.15. Started work at 10.30 and had the whole job done by 1.30. Yeah…that’s right…all done from scratch in 3 hours. Hardest working guys in seen in ages. They only stopped to drink water and an occasional few minutes in the shade. It was a really hot day… 27 celsius…so the plastic is really tight.


Today was also very hot but I couldn’t resist starting to mulch in there. We will use the no-dig method to make the beds. First a good thick mulch of cardboard and newspapers…then the manure will go on…and lastly compost on top and it’s ready for planting.


We now have 3 hugelkultur beds made. One with Onions…one with Black Tuscan Kale and the last one planted today with Peas. There’s nothing to beat home-grown Peas. These are Daniel O’Rourke… an old Irish variety. I shall also save seeds from these at the end of the season.


Andy was feeling the effects of the sun today so he chose a job under shade. He sorted out all the wood from the Poplar tree we had felled some weeks ago. The big logs were put in a big pile to season and all the small branches he sawed up and put in the fuel shed. In the country one always has to think ahead to Winter fuel supplies. This lot should be ready to use by September.

Temperatures are set to return to 19 celsius by Monday.A  better temperature for tunnel work.

34 Responses to “Garden work on hot Summer days.”

  1. Ena Ronayne June 8, 2013 at 8:43 pm #

    Bridget I’ve shared this post to xx

    • bridget June 8, 2013 at 9:41 pm #

      Thanks Ena! Hope you’ve been enjoying the sunshine. x

  2. cathsveggies1 June 8, 2013 at 9:06 pm #

    Bridget…..that’s were I got my one too…they were brill…2 men…few hours…plenty water and sandwiches and a job well done, I have mine 3 years this year!! Did you get the special offer one, as yours looks the same size as mine. ?

    • bridget June 8, 2013 at 9:39 pm #

      Yeah! It was the offer one…20ft x 14ft. Delighted with it.

      • cathsveggies1 June 8, 2013 at 10:38 pm #

        Me too…:) I put a cane straight through the roof in my first couple of weeks:( Rang him self,,he reassured me it would be ok for a while..then he sent me the tape…no problem since !

  3. Donna@Gardens Eye View June 8, 2013 at 10:45 pm #

    Looking forward to seeing how things go in the polytunnel.

  4. Charlie@Seattle Trekker June 9, 2013 at 12:58 am #

    Congratulations on your polytunnel. It is an amazing asset to extend the growing season. I have access to two recycle stores that pull materials from houses that are being torn down. I have been shopping at both for materials to make a cold frame with the next step a green house. I am looking forward to your posts discussing how you are using this for your greatest success so I can use some of your techniques.

  5. Jane June 9, 2013 at 1:37 am #

    We’d love a polytunnel..we need one to withstand the amount of snow we get. we’ve been trying to find comfrey…narcotics would be easier. What type of comfrey do you use,do you grow from seed?
    Jane x

    • bridget June 9, 2013 at 9:59 am #

      We use the Bocking 14 Comfrey which was bred in England. We got root cuttings of a few plants which we divided to make more. This one does’nt set seed so propogation is by root cuttings only. I wonder if plants can be sent to Canada? I could send you some roots in the Winter.
      Bridget x.

      • Jane June 9, 2013 at 12:47 pm #

        Thanks so much,Bridget.We now what we should be looking for. Unfortunately plants cannot be sent here. We have now found a place we think we may be able to get some…fingers crossed.
        Jane x

  6. Anny June 9, 2013 at 8:24 am #

    Glad you’re getting on so well – someone has turned the sun off again around here – very unfortunate as I was just getting used to it.

  7. islandthreads June 9, 2013 at 8:57 am #

    wow 27c is hot, we are just making double figures though at night it returns to single figures, Bridget how great to have a polytunnel, I’d love a polytunnel ……… maybe one day, how wonderful and with the manure and compost you should have a great crop, I use cardboard and newsprint to kill off grass and weeds once I get the moss and grass down, sadly without the worms there is nothing here to mix it all up, your hugelkultur beds look great and you have a nice wood pile brewing for winter warmth, Frances

    • bridget June 9, 2013 at 10:01 am #

      Hi Francis! Yes progress has been good. That’s good weather for ya. Allows you to get stuff done outside.

  8. Mizz Winkens June 9, 2013 at 12:59 pm #

    New poly tunnel- happy days! I bartered my design skills for one a few years ago. Love it – though unbearably warm at the mo. enjoy!

    • bridget June 9, 2013 at 7:33 pm #

      Too warm here too but that’s to change, for us anyway, from tomorrow.

  9. Kevin June 9, 2013 at 5:50 pm #

    Glad to see that things are moving forward for you in your new place. Enjoy!

    • bridget June 9, 2013 at 7:32 pm #

      Thanks Kevin! The good weather has helped get the garden going in the right direction.

  10. Rambling Woods June 10, 2013 at 1:25 am #

    I have never seen something like that..interesting…Michelle

  11. Alberto June 10, 2013 at 10:43 am #

    Congratulations for your new pulytunnel, it looks great. Those guys have really worked hard!
    Ireland is actually warmer than Northern Italy… I can’t believe it.

  12. Anne Wilson June 10, 2013 at 6:48 pm #

    The tunnel looks great I don’t know how we would manage without ours.

  13. KL June 11, 2013 at 7:24 pm #

    For firewood, you have to season the woods? What does that mean? I never thought about that. Seriously we modern folk will be so lost if suddenly all the modern amenities of life goes away..

    Awesome tunnel. How hot does it become during winter?

    • bridget June 15, 2013 at 9:08 am #

      Seasoning is when the wood is left to dry out. Most wood will contain sap when cut, if burned fresh the wood may not burn very well, not good for your chimney either as it will coat it in resin. Heat in tunnel will depend on outside temperatures as it isn’t heaten. Plenty warm for winter salads.

  14. Dee Sewell June 12, 2013 at 11:57 pm #

    How exciting and it looks so shiny and new!! You won’t know yourselves 🙂

    • bridget June 15, 2013 at 9:11 am #

      I have missed having a tunnel, great to have one again.

  15. SmallHouseBigGarden June 22, 2013 at 12:08 pm #

    Love those tunnels!
    Re: the no dig bed prepping..I never knew anyone up in Massachusetts who did that, but in Florida it’s quite popular. I asked around and found out it has to do with nematodes in the FL. soil. Can I ask why you chose that method?

    • bridget June 22, 2013 at 9:25 pm #

      I just like experimenting with different gardening techniques. Also some of the beds here were edged with lumps of half rotten wood which I did’nt want to keep. Hugelkultur seemed a good way to get rid of them. Things are growing well in the beds. I since made another one…that makes four. Planted with onions, peas, kale, spinach, beetroot and carrots.

  16. Small House Under a Big Sky June 27, 2013 at 7:38 pm #

    Very much enjoyed reading about your gardening adventures. And the hoop house, what a joy that must be. I have a half dozen of the metal frames, bought for just $20.00 and plan to use ours as a vegging house and an escape from winter snow and rain for our chickens when we get them. We garden in SW Michigan, USA.

    Small House / Big Sky Donna /Small House Under a Big Sky &
    White Oak Studio Designs
    Hand-Painted Vintage Furniture Transformations

    • bridget June 28, 2013 at 9:49 am #

      Just had a look at your blog…nice. So you buy items and then sell them on at fairs…is that right? I love old kitchenalia. Great bargain on the tunnel hoops…we paid €30 for 2 crop bars.

  17. Small House Under a Big Sky June 28, 2013 at 11:49 am #

    Bridget, glad to see you are now following my blog You’ll find that I organic garden in SW Michigan/USA (a zone 5) and we do have our challenges; deer eating everything, Japanese Beatles, flooding and this year (2013) very wet and cool! But I know the feeling of which you speak when you say….”I work in the garden all day and the housework get neglected.” Me too. I just love how your front yard (I am assuming it is the front?) is almost filled with plants and shrubs. My kind of WILD garden!

  18. greatdaneservicedog June 28, 2013 at 2:42 pm #

    I’m so jealous for your poly tunnel!! Enjoy it! Can’t wait to see what ya grow in it

  19. Marcella July 1, 2013 at 3:57 pm #

    I’m envious of your green house!! Good luck with all the plants, especially the peas 🙂

    • bridget July 1, 2013 at 4:14 pm #

      Thanks Marcella. They are planted out now and coming on a treat.

  20. Mominthegarden August 1, 2013 at 7:57 am #

    Hi Bridget, what a great poly tunnel! How wonderful for you! I’m excited to see what gets growing in there. I only learned about the hugelkultur beds from one of your earlier posts. They look great! What a summer we’ve had, although the rain has now really come, hasn’t it??? Dana

    • bridget August 4, 2013 at 12:39 pm #

      It certainly has…heavy monsoon like showers…crazy!

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