“A View from the Palm House” – Matthew Jebb at Malone House

Maeve Bell, Chairperson IGPS Northern Ireland, welcoming Matthew Jebb and those attending to the talk at Malone House.

In his talk ‘A View from the Palm House’, Matthew Jebb, Director of the National Botanic Gardens, entranced a large audience in Belfast with a series of inter-connections between art, architecture, plants, people, invasive species, climate change and much more besides.

A wonderful attendance at Matthew’s talk

Perhaps the most stunning moment was when he produced the seeds of the entire flora of the island of Ireland – all contained in a match box. IGPS  members were joined by some of the staff from Belfast Botanic Gardens and committee members of the Friends of  Belfast Botanic Gardens for the event in Malone House, kindly made available by Belfast Parks Department, its stunning seasonal decorations adding to everyone’s enjoyment

A moment to amaze the audience – this matchbox contains seed from all the flora of the island of Ireland. Matthew is showing them to Billy McCone, IGPS Chairperson

 

The raffle at these talks is always great fun. Among the prizes on this occasion was a selection of daffodils from Brian Duncan and they attracted great attention. Here is Pat Cameron, one of the winners in the raffle with her prize, Astelia chathamica ‘Silver Spear’.

 

And, finally, it is always enjoyable to finish off a good night with a welcome cup of tea

Many thanks to Maeve Bell and Barbara Kelso for the fabulous photographs and write-up on the night.

The Planters’ Seminar at Mount Stewart

About 30 IGPS members formed part of the audience for the Planter’s Seminar at Mount Stewart Garden, Co Down over the weekend at which Dan Hinkley, Roy Lancaster and Bleddyn and Sue Wynn-Jones talked about the special plants they have seen while exploring remote areas. As part of the seminar Neil Porteous, the Head Gardener, led a tour of the formal gardens which were resplendent with late summer colour, exciting plant combinations and a superb collection of salvias.

Text and photographs from Maeve Bell, Chairperson IGPS North. 

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Neil Porteous, Head Gardener at Mount Stewart, leading a group in the gardens

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A Visit to David Ledsham’s Garden – 9th March

It was a testimony to David Ledsham’s garden that we enjoyed it enormously despite poor weather conditions. We met with so many beautiful plants, so well cultivated, that is was a joy from beginning to end. Hellebore, trilliums and primulas were especially fabulous.

Here are just a few photographs of plants which caught the eye.

Primula megaesifolia

Primula megaesifolia

Polylepsis australis, fabulously shaggy bark

Polylepsis australis, fabulously shaggy bark

Narcissus minor with fritillaries

Narcissus minor with fritillaries

 

Many thanks to Maeve Bell for the photographs!

‘New and Exciting Herbaceous Perennials from around the World’ with Jimi Blake’

New and Exciting Herbaceous Perennials from around the World’ with Jimi Blake’, in association with Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council.

From left to right: Maeve Bell (IGPS Northern Area Chairperson) Philip Magennis (Arts and Heritage Officer, Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council), Jimi Blake and Barbara Kelso (IGPS Northern Area Committee Member who organises the lecture programme).

From left to right: Maeve Bell (IGPS Northern Area Chairperson) Philip Magennis (Arts and Heritage Officer, Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council), Jimi Blake and Barbara Kelso (IGPS Northern Area Committee Member who organises the lecture programme).

 The Northern Area Committee’s Spring Lecture, New and Exciting Herbaceous Perennials from around the World’ with Jimi Blake’, in association with Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, was an entertaining and inspiring guide through Jimi’s favourite new long flowering perennials as featured in Hunting Brook Gardens. Jimi gave great insights into how to use them in planting schemes and also his own experiences of trialing them in the Irish garden. All of this was accompanied by superb photography of the individual plants and the adventurous and colourful planting combinations which are Jimi’s trademark. Everyone went home with a ticked list of ‘must have’ plants for the coming season and a resolve to seek them out.

An audience of around 140, comprising IGPS members and non-members, packed the Old Courthouse, Antrim, eager to hear Jimi Blake speak at the IGPS Northern Committee’s Spring Lecture.

An audience of around 140, comprising IGPS members and non-members, packed the Old Courthouse, Antrim, eager to hear Jimi Blake speak at the IGPS Northern Committee’s Spring Lecture.

 Hilary Glenn (left) and Maeve Bell (right) after Maeve presented flowers to Hilary to mark the completion of her 10 year term on the regional committee.

Hilary Glenn (left) and Maeve Bell (right) after Maeve presented flowers to Hilary to mark the completion of her 10 year term on the regional committee.

 IGPS Northern Area members after enjoying the Spring Lecture. From left to right: Lorna Greenwood, Maeve Bell, Yvonne Penpraze and Billy McCone after the Spring Lecture.

IGPS Northern Area members after enjoying the Spring Lecture. From left to right: Lorna Greenwood, Maeve Bell, Yvonne Penpraze and Billy McCone after the Spring Lecture.

 

IGPS Northern Region – Plant Sale at Rowallane Gardens

A great day at the IGPS Plant Sale at Rowallane - with Billy McCone and Barbara Kelso (Plant Sale Organiser) at the stall and ready for action. And, by all accounts, there was great action with good weather, a good attendance and big sales.

A great day at the IGPS Plant Sale at Rowallane – with Billy McCone and Barbara Kelso (Plant Sale Organiser) at the stall and ready for action.
And, by all accounts, there was great action with good weather, a good attendance and big sales.

These three ladies, three generations of the one family by the way, must surely have been the best shoppers at the IGPS Plant Sale at Rowallane. What a collection of plants they have going home! It is wonderful to have people such as these supporting the plant sale; great to meet them and to share this great interest in plants. All they have to do now is find places for them in their gardens!

These three ladies, three generations of the one family by the way, must surely have been the best shoppers at the IGPS Plant Sale at Rowallane.
What a collection of plants they have going home!
It is wonderful to have people such as these supporting the plant sale; great to meet them and to share this great interest in plants.
All they have to do now is find places for them in their gardens!

Many thanks to Maeve Bell for photographs and captions!

A “Thank You” to Yvonne Penpraze

Yvonne Penpraze has been Chairperson of the Northern Region’s committee for the last four years and the incoming Chairperson, Maeve Bell, hosted an afternoon get-together at her garden to thank her for all her work and her contribution to the society. Yvonne’s parting event was the organising of our Annual General Meeting in Co. Donegal this year and it was an outstanding success.

Left to right in the photograph: Billy McCone, Maeve Bell, Victor Henry, Yvonne Penpraze, Roz Henry, Lorna Goldstrom, Maureen Reid and Barbara Kelso.

Left to right in the photograph: Billy McCone, Maeve Bell, Victor Henry, Yvonne Penpraze, Roz Henry, Lorna Goldstrom, Maureen Reid and Barbara Kelso.