leonie cornelius

LEONIE CORNELIUS & FRIENDS

Category Writing

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Bold and the Beautiful

  I know Autumn is fast approaching when the leaves start to drift off the trees and perennials are starting to turn delicious shades of gold and orange.  It is at this time every year I always get the urge to start planning for next years flower display in the border. The look of this years design is still fresh in my mind and I always think Autumn is a

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The early Autumn garden | how to create a fall haven

I love autumn in my garden. Though many plants are preparing for dormancy, and most of the stronger summer colour is gone, there is something so restful and beautiful about the garden at this of the year. With temperatures becoming cooler we also tend to get some lovely crisp, sunny days which draw us outside and with a little thought we can create lovely spaces to enjoy even in the

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Growing your own plum trees

Is there anything better than picking fruit fresh from the tree? I think that every garden should have at least one fruit tree and one of the most delicious and fairly easy to grow ones is the Prunus domestica, or plum tree. I am a big fan of these lovely trees that not only look lovely in stature and leaf but also have a great yield of delicious fruit for

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Lavender Love

There are a few plants for the garden that are instantly recognisable and firm favourites year after year. Lavender is one such plant and I think no garden can do without at least a few of these Mediterranean beauties. There are so many great things about these evergreen shrubs native to the old world- from across Europe, particularly the Mediterranean and across the Cape Verde and Canary Islands to Northern

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Butterfly Beauty | The brazen urbanite that butterflies can’t resist

The summer garden always brings to mind one shrub that is instantly recognizable to most people; the Buddleja or Butterfly bush, as is is commonly known. The name immediately gives away what this shrub is all about and the softly scented flowers are often covered in butterflies which feed on its honey-scented nectar. This mostly perennial shrub has exotic origins in the far East and was brought to Europe in Victorian

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Carlow Garden Festival

The author Alfred Mercier had a quote which said “What we learn with pleasure we never forget”. There is so much truth in this idea. I certainly know that the information I remember in most detail has been given to me in friendly conversation with an expert or in lectures which the talker has made fun and accessible. In this context there is truly no better way to learn about

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Tea Therapy

  There is nothing more satisfying than that first cup of tea in the morning. The process of sleepily brewing, steeping the bags and slowly watching the colour deepen. To many of us tea drinking is a form of ritual, a moment of calm before the days starts. In essence tea is therapy. In many countries tea culture has become a form or ritual where not only the drinking of

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Alpine Renaissance |achieving a modern look

Considering modern trends what do we think of? Garden rooms, sustainability, green walls, urban greening. The idea of an ‘alpine rockery’ is not one that brings contemporary design to mind. For many of us, the design style of rockeries feels firmly lodged in the style of 1960’s to 1980’s when they featured heavily in show garden circuit and played a strong role in setting garden trends. Often used as a

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Tulip theatre | Creating drama with tulip jewels

What plant is more perfect for creating drama than the tulip? This wonderfully elegant plant rises up out of beds and containers in a most theatrical fashion-standing proud and tall above most other bulbs and perennials. I love tulips. They remind me of weekend visits to Holland when I was a child, the saturated fields of colour stretching endlessly to the horizon as we drove through the landscape. They also

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Ferns | Magical shade loving ancients

  There is something truly magical about the thought that the plant for this week’s column was around when the dinosaurs were. In fact, the oldest fern fossil records of ferns date back to around 360 million years ago making the fern plant even older than the dinosaurs. It is no wonder so that ferns have an ancient and mythical feel to them. Unfurling slowly like a pre-historic snail, these

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