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Ring of Gullion Biodiversity

The area today has a rich flora and fauna with many nationally and internationally important habitats and species.

Biodiversity in RoG

Trees through our culture

Oghamchraobh Is Aibítir na gCrann é Ogham agus meastar go raibh sé in úsáid idir an ceathrú haois agus an deichiú haois. Creidtear gur ainmníodh Ogham in ómós de dhia Ogma. Ciallaíonn Oghamchraobh na carachtair atá in aibitir na gCrann. B’ionann an bunscríbhneóireacht agus cnuasach ina raibh fiche litir bailithe le cheile i gceithre ghrúpa agus cúig litir i ngach ceann acu. Úsáideadh na litreacha nó na carachtair chun seanGhaeilge, seanBhreatnaise agus Laidin a scríobh ar adhmad nó a greann i gcloch. Bhí traidisiún beo sna meánaoiseanna ainmneacha na gcrann a chur ar na carachtair féin.

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Ogham is known as the “Celtic Tree Alphabet” and is estimated to have been used in the fourth to the tenth century and is believed to be named after the Irish god Ogma.  Ogham refers to the character used within the alphabet itself.  The original script contained twenty letters grouped into four groups of five.  Ogham was used to write in Archaic Irish, Old Welsh and Latin, mostly on wood and stone and is based on a medieval tradition of ascribing the name of trees to individual characters.

Fearnóg / Alder / Fearn

Fearnóg / Alder / Fearn

Fásann Fearnóg cois abhainn, cois locha agus sna bogaigh. Meallann an crann seo feithidí, amfaibiaigh, éin uisce agus mamaigh bheaga. Bíonn fréamhacha domhain ag an chrann seo a tháthaíonn cré i mbruach na habhainn le chéile agus a chuireann bac ar chreimeadh abhann sa dóigh is go mbíonn an fhearnóg in ann nítrigin a fhosú. Bíonn dath na fola ar an tsú nuabhainte. Úsáidtear an choirt agus na duilleaga le súdaireacht agus ruaimeanna a dhéanamh agus mar fhioghual chun iarann a bhruithniú. Tá an choirt agus na duilleaga antaiseipteach agus úsáidtear iad chun grís craicinn agus cneácha a cneasú. Is é seo Fearnaigh, Barúntacht i gCo. Mhuineacháin an logaimn is clúití a baineann leis an fhearnóg agus tugtar ar pheileadóirí Mhuineacháin mar leasainm.

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Grows by rivers, lakes and likes wet places. They attract a wide variety of animals such as insects, amphibians, water birds and small mammals. They have deep roots which bind river banks and protect them from erosion and can fix nitrogen. When freshly cut the sap is orange-red like blood. The bark and leaves can be used for tanning leather, dyes and as charcoal in iron smelting. The leaves and bark are antiseptic, and can be used to heal rashes and wounds. Farney, a barony in Co. Monaghan is probably the most famous placename connected with the alder and used as a nickname for the footballers of Monaghan.

Caorthann / Rowan / Luis

Caorthann / Rowan / Luis

Fásann an caorthann ar na conic, in airde mhór ar na creagáin agus fiú ar thalamh tirim. Bíonn bláthanna bánbhuí ar an chaorthann agus caor scarlóideacha san fhómhar a thugann bia don smólach sa gheimhreadh. Deirtear go dtig leis na caora seo an córas imdhíonacha a neartú, díleá a fheabhsú, ionfhabhtú baictéarach a mhaolú agus an córas riospráide a láidriú. Léiríonn an crann seo i logainmneacha a leitheid de Cabhán a’ Chaorthainn agus Tulaigh Chaorthainn

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The rowan or mountain ash grows on hills or higher altitudes even on rocky ground. Its creamy yellow flowers ripen into scarlet berries which provide the thrush with food in the winter. It is said that rowan berries can boost the immune system, improve digestion, reduce bacterial infections, and strengthen the respiratory system. This tree is found in placenames like Cavanakeeran and Tullyherron.

Beith / Birch / Beithe

Beith / Birch / Beithe

Tá dhá speiceas beithe in Éirinn, an bheith chlúmhach agus an bheith gheal. Fásann siad i ndroch-chré agus in áiteanna ar dheis na gréine. Tá an bheith le fáil go fliúrseach sna Speiríní, ag fás ar cholbha an phortaigh. Is breá leis na héin bheaga, a leithéid de shiscín agus de dheargéadan, siolta na beithe. Déantar athbhríoch as an bheith agus úsáidtear é chun díthocsú a dhéanamh den chorp agus fuíoll glanadh ón chóras úiríneach. Léiritear an bheith le Gleann Bheatha i dTír Chonaill agus leis An Bheitheach Mór i dTír Eoghain.

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There are two types of birch in Ireland, Downy and Silver. They grow in poor soils and like sunny positions. Birch is typically associated with the Sperrins, growing in the peat at the edge of bogs. Its seeds are popular with small birds such as Siskin and Redpoll. Birch is used to make tonic and is a detoxifier, mainly working on the urinary system removing waste products. Glenveigh in Donegal and Beaghmore in Tyrone.

Péine Albánach / Pine / Ailm

Péine Albánach / Pine / Ailm

Féadfaidh Péine Albánach lán aibí cúig méadar is tríocha in airde agus seacht gcéad bliain a bhaint amach. Bíonn tamhan cónúil ag an Phéine a leathnaíonn ina cheann cruinneánach. Síníonn na craobhacha díreach as a thamhan. Tá an choirt álainn oráistedhoinn, fásann gága sa choirt le haois. Bíonn rath ar an phéine sna fraochmhánna agus is breá leis an iora rua é. Is é tionscadal an adhmaid go háirithe a chuirtear an crann seo ach úsáidtear roisín an phéine in ungthaí agus greimlíní fosta.

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Mature Scots Pine trees can reach thirty five metres and live for up to seven hundred years. Pine has a large, long conical trunk which spreads into a broad domed crown. The heavy branches grow outward from its trunk. The bark is a scaly orange-brown, developing plates and fissures with age. It thrives in heathland and is popular with red squirrels. It is mainly planted for timber but it is also used in ointments and plasters.

Iúr / Yew / Iodha

Iúr / Yew / Iodha

Is fearr leis an iúr a bheith taobh an fhoscaidh in ithir atá draenáilte go maith. Bíonn duilleoga an iúir nimhiúil d’fhormhór an bheostoic agus tá na síolta an-nimhiúil chomh maith. Is féidir leis na héininí an toradh a ithe, téann siad ar fara ann agus déanann siad a nead sa chrann iúir. Úsáidtear an t-iúr le hairtríteas, galar duáin, scorbach, eitinn agus galair eile nach iad, a leigheas. Déanann saoir adhmaid tóir ar an iúr mar gheall ar fheabhas a adhmaid. Deirtear gurb é Naomh Pádraig a chuir crann an iúir ag ceann trá i nGleann Rí agus gur uaidh sin a tháinig ainm an bhaile, Iúr Cinn Trá.

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Yews do not need rich soil to grow but do need a well drained site, preferably not too exposed to wind. Their leaves are poisonous to livestock and the seeds are toxic. The fruit however is eaten safely by birds which also use the tree to roost and nest in. Yews are used to treat arthritis, kidney disease, scurvy, tuberculosis and other ailments. It is said that St. Patrick planted a yew tree at the head of the strand in Clanrye and gave Newry its name.

Trom / Elder / Ruis

Trom / Elder / Ruis

Is crann nó tor duillsilteach é an trom atá forleathan sa tír seo. Tá bláthanna an troim bánbhuí i gcrobhaingí móra barrleata 10-12cm ar a leithead. Tá an choirt eitreach ar an troim cosúil le corc. Ag deireadh an tsamhraidh bíonn caora scothchorcra nó dubha air agus déantar fíon agus coirdial astu. Tá gach cuid eile den throm nimhiúil. Déantar leighis luibhe den throm agus úsáidtear é i snoíodóireacht adhmaid. Is crann draíochta é de réir an tseanchas agus tá drochchlú ar an trom dá bhrí sin. Deirtear go bhfuil sé contúirteach codail faoin trom óir tá boladh támhshuanach ó na duilleoga agus ó na bláthanna. LuaitearLiatroim, Lios Liatroma agus Aontroim leis an chrann seo.

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The elder is a deciduous tree or shrub that is widespread in this country. The elder flowers are creamy white clusters on flattened umbels 10-12cm wide. The bark of the elder is grooved like cork. At the end of the summer wine or cordial is made from the purplish black berries. Herbal remedies are made from elder and its wood is used for carving or whittling. The elder has a bad reputation in folklore and it is a magical tree. It's considered dangerous to sleep beneath the elder because of the narcotic scent from its leaves and flowers. Liatroim (grey ridge) Leitrim, Lisleitrim (fort of the grey ridge) Antrim (single ridge).

Coll / Hazel / Coll

Coll / Hazel / Coll

Fásann an coll taobh le haibhneacha nó locha agus mar sin de is siombal é de thorthúlacht, nó de ghaois. Is ionspioráid an fhile an coll agus ábhar machnaimh an mhistigh. Bhí ceangal nach beag ag Fionn Mac Cumhaill leis an choll, go háirithe le cnónna an choill. Fuair Fionn a chuid eolais tar éis dó a mhéar a dhó agus é ag cócaireacht an bhradáin fheasa. Deirtear gur ith an bradán feasa ceannann céanna cnónna an choill. Fiú amháin creidtear go raibh sciath Fhinn déanta as adhmad an choill. Rinneadh gaiste an ghliomaigh nó eascainne as adhmad an choill. Itheann daoine agus ainmhithe araon a chuid cnónna.

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Hazel grows along rivers or lakes and is a symbol of fertility or wisdom. The hazel is the inspiration of the poet and is food for thought for the mystic. Finn McCool has strong links with the hazel, especially with hazelnuts. Finn acquired his vast knowledge after burning his finger while cooking the salmon of knowledge. It is said the same salmon lived on hazel nuts. It is believed that Finn’s shield was made from hazel wood. Lobster or eel traps were made from hazel wood. Both humans and animals enjoy hazelnuts.

Cuileann / Holly / Tinne

Cuileann / Holly / Tinne

Féadtar cuileann a bharrscoitheadh agus déantar úsáid as an adhmad in ionad éabainn le méarchláir pianó a dhéanamh. Rinneadh gléasanna matamaiticiúla, cosa scine agus spóil as adhmad an chuilinn. Ainneoin a dhuilleoga deilgneacha bíonn an cuileann iontach blasta d’ainmhithe agus gearrtar duilliúr an chuilinn mar fharae. Rinneadh purgóid as a chaora agus a choirt. Sa lá atá inniu ann úsáidtear an cuileann ag an Nollaig mar ghné mhaisiúil go háirithe craobhacha agus caora orthu. Is léir go raibh an nós seo ann roimh theacht na Criostaíochta go hÉirinn mar is crann síorghlas é an cuileann agus siombal d’athnuachan agus athbheochan i lár an gheimhridh. Allt an Chuilinn, Gleann Chuilinn agus An Chuileanntrach trí logainm atá luaite leis an chuileann.

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Holly can be coppiced and its wood can be used instead of ivory for making piano keys. Mathematical instruments, knife handles and shuttles were all made from holly wood. In spite of its spiky leaves holly foliage provides tasty fodder for animals. Its berries and bark were used as a laxative. Today the holly is mostly used as Christmas decorations especially berried branches. This practice obviously predates the arrival of Christianity to Ireland, as an evergreen tree, the holly represents renewal and regeneration in midwinter. Altahullion, Glencullin and Cullentragh.

Oak / Duir

Oak / Duir

Tá dhá chineál den chrann darach le fáil go forleathan in Éirinn, an dair Ghaelach(Quercus petraea) agus an dair ghallda(Quercus robur). Cothaíonn an dair go leor cineálacha fiadhúlra, mar shampla plandaí, éin, feithidí a bhíonn a mbeathú féin nó ag neadú thart timpeall ar an chrann seo. Maireann an crann seo ar feadh na céadta bliain agus léirítear an dair mar shiombal den neart, den torthúlacht, den ríogacht agus den bhuanseasmhacht. Is é crann oifigiúil náisiúnta na hÉireann an dair. Tá an crann seo fite fuaite i mbéaloideas na tíre seo, i dTáin Bó Cuailgne, i scéaltaí Fiannaíochta agus tá tábhacht na darach le feiceáil go fóill i logainmneacha na tíre seo .i. Doire gCalgaigh, Doire Cholm Cille, Doire Beag, Cill Dara, Doire Mór srl.

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There are two species of oak that grow widely in Ireland, the Irish oak and the pedunculate oak. Oak supports many different varieties of wildlife including plants, birds and insects, which feed or nest about the tree. This tree can live for hundreds of years and is seen as a symbol of strength, fertility, majesty and tenacity. The oak is the official national tree of Ireland. This tree is embedded in the folklore of Ireland, i.e. in the Táin Bo Cuailgne, in lore of the Fianna and the importance of the oak can still be seen in the prevalence oak in the placenames of Ireland, Derry City, Derry Beg, Kildare and Derrymore.

Sceach / Hawthorn / Huath

Sceach / Hawthorn / Huath

Bíonn na bláthanna bána nó bándearga na sceiche gile cumhraithe i Mí na Bealtaine agus is brea leis na héin a sceachóirí san fhómhair. Is léir go bhfuil nasc láidir idir crann na sceiche gile agus na síoga. Fiú sa lá atá inniu ann tchítear an corr-sceach nó crann sceiche gile ag fás ina aonair i bpáirc threafa ar fhaitíos go gcuirfí isteach ar na síogaithe atá ina gcónaí ann. Tá áiteanna in Éirinn ann go fóill ina mbíonn an crann seo maisithe mar chuid d’Fhéile na Bealtaine. Deirtear go mbíonn an crann aonair seo ag fás ar shuíomh ársa a bhaineann le seanchas na háite. Úsáidtear an sceach gheal mar leigheas don galar croí agus don chóras imshruthaithe comh maith le mí-dhíleá agus pianta goile á maolú. Maireann ainm na sceiche sna logainmneacha seo Baile na Sceach, Cluain Sceach agus Baile Sceach.

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In May the white or pink hawthorn flowers are highly scented and birds love their haws or berries in the autumn. There is clearly a strong link between the hawthorn tree and fairies; even today the fairy thorn or lone bush can be seen growing amid a ploughed field for fear of offending the fairies who live in the tree. There are still places in Ireland where the fairy thorn is decorated as part of the Bealtaine festival. It is said that the lone bush or hawthorn marks a ancient site in the local folklore. The hawthorn is used in treatments for heart disease or problems with circulatory system, along with relieving indigestion and stomach pains. Ballynaskeagh, Clonskeagh and Ballyskeagh.

Saileach Bhán / Willow / Saille

Saileach Bhán / Willow / Saille

Is maith leis an tsaileach ithir thais agus faightear í cois locha, ar bhruach na habhann, sna portaigh agus sna riasca. Is furast an tsaileach a fhás ó na gearrthóga agus tig le formhór na sailí idir cúig troigh is triocha nó caoga troigh ar airde a bhaint amach. Feictear na caitíní (na bláthanna) ar na saileacha san earrach; tugtar caitíní orthu ionas go bhfuil cuma ruball an chait orthu. Bíonn an iliomad feithidí ar an chrann seo agus mar sin de is foinse mhaith bhia do na héin é. Bíonn comhábhar gníomhach an aspairín le fáil i gcoirt na sailí agus úsáidtear an tsaileach chun tinneas cinn nó pianta mhatáin a mhaolú.

Déantar coimeanna na gcláirseach as adhmad na sailí, agus tá an chláirseach is cáiliúla in Éirinn déanta go hiomlán as adhmad na sailí – bíonn An Chláirseach Bhóraimhe agus Coill Sailí luaite léi.

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Willow grows in damp soils, is easily grown from cuttings and most willows can reach thirty-five to fifty feet in height. All willows are rich in insects and are therefore a good source of food for insect eating birds. Willow is often found near lakes and ponds or planted in gardens and parks. Willow bark contains the active ingredient in aspirin and can be used to relieve headache and muscle pain.

The soundboxes of harps are made from willow wood and the most famous Irish harp in the country is made completely from willow – the Brian Boru Harp! – Coill Sáile, Kilsally

Ash / Nin

Ash / Nin

Fásann an fhuinseog i ngach saghas ithreacha seachas ithir aigéadeach agus b’fhearr leis an chrann seo áiteanna tirime. Tig leis an fhuinseog daichead méadar in airde a bhaint amach agus fásann an fhuinseog i gcoillte agus i bhfálta seach, go háirithe in ithreacha troma atá lán d’aol. Tá bláthanna dorcha beagnach dubh ar an fhuinseog agus tá cuma ar shíolta na fuinseoige cosúil le slám eochracha sciathánacha. Mar gheall ar a solúbthacht agus a láidreacht déantar camáin as adhmad na fuinseoige. Comhthacíonn an fhuinseog le hathnuachan agus le hathghiniúint. Úsáidtear an fhuinseog i gcogas luibhe le fiabhras a mhaolú. Tá an crann seo le feiceáil go mion minic i loganimneacha na hÉireann, .i. an Chorr Uinseogach agus Allt na hUinse peire acu..

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Grows in a wide range of soils but does not grow in acidic soils and prefers well-drained sites. Ash can grow up to forty metres tall and is found commonly in woods and hedgerows, especially in lime-rich, heavy soils. Ash flowers are dark almost black and the seeds form an arrangement of clumps of winged keys. Ash is used in the manufacture of hurls because of its flexibility and strength. Ash is also used in herbal remedies to cure fever. This tree represents renewal and regeneration. Ash is often found in the placenames of Ireland, i.e., Corrinshigo and Altnahinch.

Caor Chon/ Guelder-rose / Peith

Caor Chon/ Guelder-rose / Peith

Tig leis an tor seo ceithre méadar in airde a bhaint amach agus fásann sé i gcoilte, i scrobarnach agus i bhfálta, go háirithe in ithir lán le haol. Tá nimh sna caora do dhaoine ach is féidir iad a ithe nuair atá siad bruite. Tagann dath dearg nó buí ar na duilleoga i nDeireadh Fómhair nó luath i mí na Samhna. Meallann neachtar na mbláthanna an bheach ghabhair agus is foinse bhia do na héin na caora. Úsáidtear coirt na caoire con le cógas luibhe a dhéanamh.

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Grows to four metres high and are found in woods, scrubs and hedges, especially on damp, lime-rich soils. The berries are produced in Autumn and are poisonous to man but are edible when cooked. The leaves turn vivid red or yellow in October and early November. The nectar from the flowers attract hover-flies and the berries are a good source of food for birds. The bark is also used in herbal medicines.

Eidhneán / Ivy / Gort

Eidhneán / Ivy / Gort

Soláthraíonn bláthanna bánbhuí an eidhneáin beathú geimhridh do na corrfheithidí a eitlíonn le linn an gheimhridh. Aibíonn na caora san Earrach agus is foinse cothaithe iad don lon dubh agus don smólach. Ní seadán é an crann seo agus is féidir le hualach an eidhneáin an crann óstach a leagan. Déantar athbhríoch leis an eidhneán agus luibh spreagthach é.

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Produces pale yellow flowers in winter which provide food for the few winter-flying insects and berries ripen in the spring and are an important source of food for blackbird and thrush. Ivy is not a parasite on trees, but its weight may make a tree more likely to topple. Ivy is also used to make tonic and is a gentle stimulant.

Crann Creathach / Aspen / Eadha

Crann Creathach / Aspen / Eadha

Is féidir le Crann Creathach aibí cúig méadar is fiche in airde a bhaint amach agus a bheith clúdaithe le léicean. Chomh luath is go mbíonn na torthaí pailnithe scaoileann siad síoltaí beaga bídeacha clúmhacha a mheallann réimse leathan feithidí a bhíonn ina bhfoinse bia do na héin agus do na bóíní Dé. Déanann éanliath na spéire, an cnagairí san áireamh, a gcuid neadacha i bpollta adhmaid mharbh sa chrann seo. Úsáidtear an crann creathach le luibheanna eile chun pian ailt, pian droime, pian néaróige a mhaolú agus fadhbanna lamhnáin a réiteach.

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Mature Aspen can grow up to twenty five metres in height and may be covered with lichen. Once the fruits are pollinated they release tiny fluffy seeds in the summer and attract a wide variety of insects which in turn provides food for birds and ladybirds. The deadwood cavities provide the birds, such as the woodpecker, with nesting opportunities. Aspen is also used with other herbs to treat joint pain, back trouble, nerve pain and bladder problems.

Féithleann /Honeysuckle / Féithleann

Féithleann /Honeysuckle / Féithleann

Is féith bríomhar an féithleann le duilleoga glasa ubhchruthach air. Go coitianta, fásann sé sna fálta sceacha agus tá breis is cead is ochtó speicis ann. Bíonn óstach tacaíochta de dhíth ag an féithleann agus é ag fás; bíonn rath air i ngach saghas ithreach, in ithir shaibhir ach go háirithe. Dhéanfaí dianphrúnáil ar an fhéith seo sa dóigh is go bhfásfadh sé go tiúbh agus thiocfadh leis na héin a bheith ag neadú agus ar fhara ann. Meallann neachtar an fhéithlinn bumbóga, féileacáin agus leamhain. Itheann crocráin coille, ceoláirí agus smólaigh caora an fhéithlinn. Úsáidtear an féithleann chun réimhse ionfhabhtaithe, at inchinne agus ailse a mhaolú.

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Honeysuckle is a vigorous climber with green, oval leaves, it is commonly found in hedgerows and there are one hundred and eighty species. Honeysuckle requires support to cling to as it develops and grows in most soils, but thrives in fertile soil. If honeysuckle is pruned hard it thickens up, to become an ideal nest and roost site. The flowers nectar attracts bumblebees, butterflies and moths. The berries are consumed by bullfinches, warblers and thrushes. The medicinal properties of Honeysuckle include treating a range of infections, swelling of the brain and cancer.

Fraoch / Heather / Ur

Fraoch / Heather / Ur

Fásann an planda seo idir fiche agus caoga ceintimeadár in airde, in ithreacha aigéadacha, in áiteanna oscailte nó faoi scáth ar dheisiur na gréine. Is breá leis an fhraoch corrfhéaraigh agus athfhásann sé i ndiaidh a dhó. Úsáidtear an fraoch mar antaiseipteach agus chun díthocsainiú a dhéanamh mar fhualbhrostach agus chun cneácha a chneasú. An Fraoch Dubh, Inis Fraoigh agus an tArd Fhraoigh.

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Grows to a height of twenty to fifty centimetres, on acidic soils in open sunny situations and in moderate shade. Heather is tolerant to grazing and regenerates following occasional burning. Heather is used as an antiseptic, for antimicrobial cleansing and detoxifying, as a diuretic and to heal wounds. Freeduff, Inishfree, and Tardree.

Aiteann / Gorse / Onn

Aiteann / Gorse / Onn

Is é an t-aiteann an tor is coiteanta a fhásann sa cheantar, faightear é i réimse leathan gnáthóg idir móintigh agus páirceanna agus gairdíní uirbeacha. Is ball d’aicme píseanaigh é. Tig leis an tor seo a bheith faoi bhláth fud fad na bliana agus cothaíonn sé slua feithidí agus damhán alla atá mar bheathú d’éiníní bheaga. Tugann na duilleoga lannacha áit neadaithe agus foscadh maith do na héin bheaga.

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Gorse is the most widely distributed shrub, growing in a wide variety of habitats ranging from heaths and parks in towns or gardens and is a member of the pea family. It flowers almost all year round and supports a host of insects and spiders which provide food for small birds. The dense spiny bushes also provide small birds with a sheltered place to nest.

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