One of the best places to get help on genealogical questions is a Rootsweb mailing list. There are mailing lists available for surnames, countries, states, military, and just about anything you can think of.
The Tipperary mailing list is very active and I sent them a question about the meaning of the townland names and within a short time I received a response and a link to a great website: Bunachar Logainmneacha na hEireann or Placenames of Ireland.
You type in the name of the townland and will see a list of townlands throughout Ireland with than name. There is often more than one townland with the same name, and in some cases, there are many. Click on the one you want and you will go to a site where you can toggle between a map and data. The data section usually has an attachment which has a list of the various spellings of the townland over the years and the meaning of the name.
I went through the list for the townlands of the Ryans and Roches and this is what I found:
Foilinefingoe (Turraheen Upper Thoirthín Uachtarach) – Foilinefingoe is not found in townland listings, probably because it was part of Turraheen Upper for so long. Meaning – not sure – looks like it might mean “the stream called” (Lawrence Ryan was born here)
Commonealine Comán Laighean – little hollow of the flax (Lawrence Ryan and Johanna Roche were living here at the time of their marriage and when their daughter Maggie was born.
Bahagha – Na Beathacha – birch lands (Michael Roche and Mary Wallace lived here and most of their children were born here)
Birchgrove – Garrán Beithe – Estate of G. J.Birch (one of the children of Michael Roche and Mary Wallace was born in Birchgrove)
Glengar – An Gleann Gearr – short glen (Michael Ryan was born here in 1879)
Turtulla – Thorclaigh – no meaning given (Mary Ryan was born here in 1880)
Now if only I could figure out how to pronounce these names!
I will go through the listings and post the townlands for other Colbert-Whelan families in a future post.