Local Weather

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Pheasant’s Tail Grass (Anemanthele lessoniana)

Pheasant’s Tail grass in late September (Anemanthele lessoniana).
Pic. G. Willoughby.

Fast-growing, frost hardy, Pheasant’s Tail grass (Anemanthele lessoniana), which enjoys full sun or partial shade, will provide all year-round colour in your garden, while also offering a certain movement and structure.

Pheasant’s Tail grass enjoys moderately fertile, medium to light, well-drained soil and will form a fountain-like clump of slender colourful foliage; its blades emerging first as healthy, green shoots, before quickly changing to irregular yellow, orange, brown and red streaks.

Like so many other plants, during the colder months of the year, these grass blade colours become much more intense; worthy of beholding especially if planted and viewed in an area, to the fore of where the sun either rises or sets.

An added bonus are the sprays of airy grass flower heads, which will emerge in August/September. It does self-seed, but unwanted plants can easily be removed or simply potted up and given to other lovers of gardening. Seed-heads do provide a winter food source for finches and other seed-eating birds.

In spring, as your garden comes back to life, you can easily tease out any deceased foliage by gently and safely running your fingers through its gentle blades.


June 2nd 2022 – Shame On Thurles Municipal District Councillors.

Empty flower beds and empty dirty flower containers, Thurles June 1st, 2022

Today is June 2nd, 2022, and as yet not one flower container or flower bed has been planted this year by Thurles Municipal District Council staff.

Perhaps one of our local councillors might like to communicate to the public on why this has been allowed to happen.

Before the introduction of Property Tax all of our flower containers and hanging baskets were planted. Today, no public hanging basket exists and expensive flower containers remain filthy and empty of plants, except for what seeded itself over last year.

Thurles Railway Bridge, 1st June, 2022.

Yes, we have some large new pink flower containers on Liberty Square filled with “Box Hedging” and lavender-blue flowered “Catmint”, but these containers also are being neglected, with much evidence of “Dock” plants and “Yellow Rocket Cress”, same never ever intended for planting.

Thankfully, Thurles Shopping Centre and Lidl Supermarket have privately set the example, with both premises shaming Thurles Municipal District Council officials and our local elected councillors.

River Suir Thurles yesterday, June 1st, 2022.

Between poor street surfaces, a river that currently looks like an open sewer and street lighting burning 24 hours each day; 4 questions:
(1) Why do we need a tourist office?
(2) Why do we continue to pay Property Tax?
(3) Why do we continue to pay the salaries of failed administrators?
(4) Why are Thurles residents accepting poor standards of administration in complete silence?


Trachycarpus fortunei – Another Reason To Look Skyward In Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

We regularly recommend the people of Thurles and their temporary elected public servants to focus their gaze more upwards these days, away from their mobile phones screens.
Reason being that the public can more readily view how taxes from hard earned income is being wasted, e.g. 29 street lights burning 24 hours each day, 24 of them for over 3 months.

For all you flower lovers out there, I am happy to relate that there is now another reason to stand and stare skyward. Yes, the “Trachycarpus fortunei” or “Chinese windmill palm“, has burst into bloom here in Thurles.

Trachycarpus fortunei” or “Chinese windmill palm Mill Road, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Also known as “Chusan palm“, this solitary 45 year old, 25ft hardy evergreen palm tree, in the family Arecaceae and native to parts of China, Japan, Myanmar and India, can be viewed in all its glory in O’Driscoll’s Garden Centre, latter situated on the Mill Road, east of the town centre and well know, throughout Ireland, as the home of rare plants.

The tree is a single-stemmed fan palm which can grow between 12–20 m (39–66 ft) high with a trunk diameter of 15–30 cm (6–12 in). Each leaf is 140–190 cm (4 ft 7 in – 6 ft 3 in) long, with the stalk that connects the blade with the leaf base (petiole) some 60–100 cm (2 ft 0 in – 3 ft 3 in) long, and the leaflets up to 90 cm (2 ft 11 in) long.

The flowers, as the picture shows are yellow (male) and greenish (female), measuring about 2–4 mm (3⁄32–5⁄32 in) across, borne in large branched panicles up to 1 m (3 ft 3 in) long in spring; with male and female flowers produced on separate trees (dioecious). The fleshy fruit is of a yellow to blue-black, kidney-shape, with thin skin and a central stone containing the seed 10–12 mm (13⁄32–15⁄32 in) in length , which ripens in mid-autumn.

One of the hardiest of palms, “Chinese windmill palm” has been cultivated in China and Japan, for thousands of years for its coarse but very strong leaf sheath fibre, used in the making of rope, sacks, and other coarse cloth where great strength is important.

The species was first brought from Japan (Dejima) to Europe by the German physician Philipp Franz von Siebold * in 1830. Its more common name, “Chusan palm” refers to Chusan Island (now Zhoushan Island), where Robert Fortune first saw cultivated specimens.

* Philipp Franz Balthasar von Siebold (1796 – 1866) was a German physician, botanist and traveler. He achieved prominence by his studies of Japanese flora and fauna and the introduction of Western medicine in Japan. He was the father of the first female Japanese doctor educated in Western medicine.

In 1849, Robert Fortune * smuggled plants from China to the Kew Horticultural Gardens, London and the Royal garden of Prince Albert, East Cowes, Isle of Wight, United Kingdom, hence the later name Trachycarpus fortunei, after Robert Fortune.

* The Scottish botanist Robert Fortune was also commissioned by the East India Company to steal tea from China; one of the greatest heists and pieces of corporate espionage carried out in human history, that resulted in dislodging one monopoly and establishing the British East India Trade company, as the largest producer of tea.


Unbeatable Value In Flower Bulbs – O’Driscolls Garden Centre Thurles.

Attention you lovers of gardening.

A massive sale of all types of flower bulbs and tubers is taking place at O’Driscolls Garden Centre, Mill Road, Thurles, Co. Tipperary, presently.
All the selected certified bulbs and tubers, including Dahlias and Gladioli, are selling for just €2.00, per packet, less than half the normal retail price of €4.50.

Sale ends Tuesday May 31st or while stocks last.


Holycross Village Market, Begins A New Trading Year.

Dust off that Easter Bonnet, it’s market time again at Holycross, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Holycross market Thurles, Co. Tipperary look forward to meeting all their many old customers and hopefully indeed some new consumers, once again next Saturday April 16th, in the village from 1:00pm to 3:00pm for the beginning of yet another trading year.

The market will run, bi weekly, from April 16th until December 10th, with lots of interesting events along the way.
The market welcomes new traders throughout the year, while anchoring it’s personality and stability with a core group of valued old friends.

Come visit a very special Easter market this week, with an Easter raffle and Egg Hunt; come and join us, grab a coffee and a tasty bake, listen to the music, take a seat and chat with friends.

Note: As part of our new initiative to network with local businesses, Holycross Village Market are delighted to have Park 63 @Parkers Restaurant on board this week. Parker’s have put forward a voucher, which will be raffled at the market on next Saturday, April 16th, between 1:00 & 3:00pm.