Explore the first flowers of Spring with Scottish and UK speakers Catherine Erskine and Ross Barbour/Helen Picton. Includes full guided tour of Altamont Gardens with Head Gardener Paul Cutler and Specialist Plant Fair in Altamont Plant Sales.
Borris House, Borris, Co. Carlow, is hosting this special event on Sunday 14th May 2023, The Rare & Special Plant Fair. Up to 40 Specialist Nurseries from all over Ireland will be on site to offer and showcase beautiful, unusual and hard to find varieties of plants for sale, as well as giving expert advice on care and growing.
Dawn Chorus at Altamont Gardens with Éanna Ní Lamhna on Sunday 21st May 2023 at 4.30 am, lovely early morning visit to Altamont Gardens and do not forget to wear warm clothes. This a free event at Altamont but tickets are required, so make sure to book your tickets.
Tickets available at: firstname.lastname@example.org (tickets are limited for this event}
Wear warm clothing and shoes or boots.
Refresments: Tea/coffee & biscuits included
After a closely contested "battle" which ended in a "draw" in 2022 there have been loud calls for a re-match this year. So if you missed what was widely acknowledged as the highlight of the Carlow Garden Festival in 2022, you have another chance to learn from two of the UK's most respected gardeners, Adam Frost and James Alexander-Sinclair who come together to present design concepts for an outdoor space.
Adam and James will present two previous garden designs they have worked upon, providing lots of information, advice and helpful hints to create your own outdoor space. Whatever the size, aspect or style of your garden, you'll be guaranteed lots of ideas and tips that you can replicate in your own garden. Expect to hear about key design principles that guide the creation of an average sized modern garden interspersed with hilarious one liners and friendly banter.
With Ireland falling behind on every single one of its climate goals, what is there left to do?! Randal Plunkett, the man behind the Dunsany Nature Reserve, Ireland’s only large-scale rewilding project will present his talk entitled “Fantastic Wild, Seeing the Bigger Picture” focusing on nature’s ability to recover, regenerate and even adapt against the odds. The talk discusses the transformation of Dunsany’s project, the evolution of the plants and the changes rewilding has had on the animal population but most importantly how the public can make their own micro changes and help boost biodiversity. A complling speaker, this is one talk on the festival programme you can't afford to miss.
"365 Days of Colour in Your Garden - Plants, Tips and Techniques for Year-Round Colour" by Nick Bailey. In his talk, '365 Days of Colour in Your Garden', BBC Gardeners' World presenter Nick Bailey discusses how to plant and manage your garden, whatever its size, to ensure year-round colour and interest. Initially explaining simple colour theory principles and how to apply them to your garden, the talk goes on to highlight beautiful plants and planting combinations for every season no matter what type of garden you have.
In this compelling talk, gardener and writer Alasdair Moore traces Thomas Hanbury's remarkable life and passion for horticulture, examining how a young man from Clapham, London, formed the finest private plant collection of his generation, with over 5,000 rare and exotic plants from Africa and Asia alongside native Mediterranean flora. Overlooking the sea on the Franco/Italian Riviera, La Mortola remains one of the most famous botanical gardens in the world, a classic gardenesque style estate on a promontory overlooking the Mediterranean. Thomas Hanbury remains one of the outstanding figures of 19th-century horticulture, his legacy includes the gift of the gardens at Wisely to the Royal Horticultural Society.
"Making Magic in My Garden" at Carlow Garden Festival with June Blakes combination of plants and colours in The Delta Sensory Gardens. "Magic in My Garden" for those who have either heard of, or seen the amazing colour displays in June Blake’s Garden in County Wicklow, this is a great opportunity to find out more about the different plant and colour combinations that make this garden so unique. June explains how to create colour and magic in your own gardening space through a range of flowers including tulips, mostly in shades of red, orange, black and purple.
Altamont Estate and Gardens covers 16 hectares, and includes a garden centre, formal and informal gardens, grasslands, and treeline and woodland habitats leading to the banks of the River Slaney. Ecologist Mark Desmond presents its interesting biodiversity which includes the Slaney river which flows along the eastern boundary of the estate and is protected under the Slaney River Valley Special Area of Conservation (SAC).
Seamus O’ Brien, Head Gardener of the National Botanic Gardens, Kilmacurragh, recounts the adventures of a trip he led in July 2022 to the mountains of Ladakh, where he and his group studied a high altitude desert flora. Ladakh has some of the greatest glaciers in all Asia and these glaciers water the deserts on the mountain slopes and valleys below, giving rise to a rich flora. Hear how climate change is threatening this rare eco-system.
In his talk, “Soil to Seed” for the Carlow Garden Festival, Colm will delve into the area of regenerative organic vegetable production and share with you the most environmentally sustainable approach to growing vegetables. Learn how to reduce your inputs, cut your labour and reap the rewards while enhancing the environment. Unsurprisingly soil health will be at the forefront of the talk with a particular focus on improving healthy soil which translates to healthy vegetables.
Shankill Castle’s host’s a trio of events in Carlow Garden Festival, which starts with Kitty’s informative talk, Prime Plants for the Irish Kitchen Garden, focusing on ten essential kitchen garden plants that thrive in our Irish climate. Mary and Robert White of Blackstairs Ecotrails lead an in-depth foraging walk through the grounds and organic farm of Shankill Castle. Seamus Jordan of Plúr Bakery will cook up a three-course feast supper, celebrating foraged, seasonal and local ingredients, ending the day with a relaxed evening of great food and garden chat.
Should gardening change and somehow; ‘return to nature’? At London’s big Chelsea Show there has been a new emphasis on sustainable gardening and the use of eco-friendly native ’plants’ and yet the award for the Best in Show went to a large exhibit which is unsustainable in British gardens and are the very opposite of no-mow gardening. Robin Lane Fox explores the contradictions here and the way in which people, an invasive species, react to them, whether visitors to his garden or professors and students in the big Oxford college gardens he runs.
Matthew examines how plants can be used to maximum effect whatever the shape or size of the garden. Using examples of gardens designed by Matthew over the last 20 years, this talk considers the use of plants in relation to materials, place and vernacular, the architecture of plants and the importance of the garden in the wider environment. Alys tells the story of making the most of what you’ve got, of what to take with you and what to start again. Alys shows you how to redesign a garden sustainably by recycling what you’ve got rather than starting again. And how small really is beautiful, that a slither of garden can truly feed you, the wildlife, look beautiful and leave you plenty of time to go swimming in the sea.
Marie Staunton leads a garden tour around Delta Sensory Gardens showing how gardeners can mix texture and colour to create wonderful and exciting combinations. Regularly voted as top visitor attraction in Carlow on Trip Advisor, this journey takes the visitor through the series of multi-sensory gardens including the formal Rose Garden, the Five Senses Garden, the Circle of Life and the Stolen Child Garden, which have been created by Ireland's leading garden designers to indulge every one of the senses.
Fergus, chosen by Gardens Illustrated as one of the 30 most influential living garden designers and horticultural educator in Britain, talks about the history of Great Dixter, the 15th century manor house and its restoration by the famous arts and crafts architect, Sir Edwin Lutyens. In a wide ranging talk, he explores the influence of Nathaniel Lloyd on its infrastructure and design
"The Ballads of Billy the Kid" on the lawns of Lisnavagh House & Gardens. Off the Ground Theatre are taking a trip to the Wild West for the first time this summer, with "The Ballads of Billy the Kid". The famous outlaw and desperado who made his name as a gunslinger and fearsome cowboy in Arizona and New Mexico is the hero of this brand new play, from the minds of OTG graduates Mat Oliphant and Connor Wray.
Celebrating the Snowdrop and other spring treasures. 12th Annual Gala will be held on Saturday, 27th January 2024 at Ballykealey House.
Sticks, Stems and The Stars of Spring are featured by Steve Edney (UK), Former Head Gardener at the Salutation and Canterbury Cathedral, Owner of No Name Nursery and Garden Consultant. Plants and People - Snowdrops in a German Garden are featured by Michael Driesvogt (Germany), Director of Park Härle Arboretum, Bonn-Oberkassel.
The very popular Snowdrop Month at Altamont Gardens runs from February 1st to 29th and is a great opportunity to view this unique cole3ction, now amongst the largest in Ireland, with over 150 named varieties. This 40-acre estate, on the banks of the River Slaney near Tullow features an enchanting blend of formal, informal and wild gardens. Guided tours take place each Monday - Friday throughout February at 2pm. and group tours by appointment.