The Meadows at Gortlecka Crossroads

Meadows are in!

Meadows are the latest garden must-have. We have looked with a little envy at the gardens created by the likes of Piet Oudolf and have been frustrated that such plantings do not do well in our wetter climate. His plantings look wonderful in the crisp, dry, frosty weather of the continent but are simply mush here in Ireland. Dead herbaceous plants look well against a blue sky while covered in sparkling frost but less so when standing in water or mud. Grasses can, likewise, look very miserable.

In recent years there has been a great interest in wildflower meadows which look colourful during the summer season and are then cut down in autumn, a practice more suited to our weather conditions and a practice which does a little towards providing suitable plantings for insects, the pollinators so essential for the good of our environment.

Mullaghmore view from Gortlecka meadow (1)
A species-rich meadow at Gortlecka Crossroads with view to Mullaghmore

There are various meadow seed recipes – some for annual meadows and others for perennial meadows – and one can choose as suits ones needs and aesthetic preferences. I have seen road verges and roundabouts planted as meadows and they are very attractive and certainly add wonderful splashes of colour to the countryside.

Gortlecka Cross meadows (8)
The meadows at Gortlecka Crossroads – part of The Burren National Park.

Gortlecka Cross meadows (5)Gortlecka Cross meadows (2)Gortlecka Cross meadows (1)Gortlecka Cross meadows (4)

We spent a week on The Burren last month and took a short walk around the meadows at Gortlecka Crossroads. Nature is certainly the best designer and planter or meadows and their simple beauty is a joy to experience. It would be a genius  who could replicate such plantings, at once simple and remarkably complex.

Gortlecka Cross meadows (7)
Enter a caption
Gortlecka Cross meadows (6)
The amazing richness of plants growing in the meadows.

Gortlecka Cross meadows (3)Gortlecka Cross meadows (3)

I hope you enjoy the photographs and I recommend you visit and enjoy the experience yourself some time.

 

Some individual plants from Gortlecka Crossroads:

Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious white and pink (1)
Succisa pratensis, Devil’s Bit Scabious, normally blue but here a light pink.
Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious (3)
Succisa pratensis, Devil’s Bit Scabious, getting friendly with….I’m not sure!
Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious (2)
Succisa pratensis – Devil’s Bit Scabious
Sonchus arvensis Perennial Sowthistle (3)
Sonchus arvensis – Perennial Sowthistle 
Solidago virguarea Goldenrod
Solidago virguarea, Goldenrod
Solidago virguarea Goldenrod with Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious (1)
Solidago virguarea, Goldenrod with Succisa pratensis, Devil’s Bit Scabious
Origanum vulgare Wild Marjoram
Origanum vulgare, Wild Marjoram
Epipactis helleborine Broad-leaved helleborine
Epipactis helleborine, Broad-leaved helleborine
Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious white and pink (4)
Succisa pratensis, Devil’s Bit Scabious in white
Hypericum perforatum Perforate St. John's Wort
Hypericum perforatum, Perforate St. John’s Wort
Mentha aquatica Water Mint
Mentha aquatica, Water Mint
Neottia ovata Common Twayblade
Neottia ovata, Common Twayblade – well past its best! 
Solidago virguarea Goldenrod with Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious (1)
Solidago virguarea, Goldenrod with Succisa pratensis, Devil’s Bit Scabious 
Solidago virguarea Goldenrod with Succisa pratensis Devil's Bit Scabious (2)
Solidago virguarea, Goldenrod, with Succisa pratensis, Devil’s Bit Scabious

 

5 thoughts on “The Meadows at Gortlecka Crossroads

      1. We started on a “bulb lawn” (not a bit pretentious of us!) some years back – snowdrops (several thousand), crocus, daffodils, snakeshead fritillaries etc etc, bits and pieces. We planted some smaller cultivars of camassias and some common spotted orchids which are quite late-flowering and this lead to us leaving the grass grow away. We added yellow rattle and nature introduced quite a range of native plants without any help from us – a wonderful covering of forget-me-nots one year, hawkweed another, daisies and buttercups always, plantains etc so that now we have our own little meadow. It is very interesting as it is not quite predictable year to year.

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s