After what felt like Ireland’s longest winter, everyone wants out! Out of the big coats, out of the house and out of the car.
Get some fresh air and do it in style and colour! Kildare has some of Ireland’s finest gardens, all in blossom now.
So what are you blooming waiting for?
We’ve weeded out some of the best options.
1. Burton House, Athy
Burton House in an early Georgian villa, surrounded by lush flower, vegetable and woodland gardens with park and farmland walks. Large herbaceous borders, shrubberies and even a large woodland garden island can all be found here and you’re in luck – the gardens come to life from February but May and June are peak months for variety and colour.
2. Coolgarigan church and garden, Naas
If you like flowers, you’re not going to be disappointed here where you’ll find a collection of trees and shrubs which won’t be found anywhere else in Ireland The site attracts worldwide gardening groups and dendrologists to examine the 15 acre garden. Many plan their visit in May to witness a most spectacular display of colour from azaleas and rhododendrons
3. Bog of Allen Nature Centre, Lullymore
It’s where wild meets wonderful. The wildlife conservation gardens at the Bog of Allen nature centre are situated over a one acre site. Work began on them in 2004 with an aim of providing a refuge for biodiversity. The gardens are completely peat free and home made compost is used to enrich the soil. The wild flower beds benefit insects and are managed without using pesticides or chemicals. Snails and other pests are controlled by a thriving population of frogs and beetles.
4. Japanese Gardens
Over 120,000 people visit what is regarded as the finest of their kind in Europe. Situated in the Irish National Stud, the gardens were created to feed the soul as well as nurture the senses. The gardens were laid out over a four-year period, from 1906, by Japanese master horticulturist, Tassa Eida, to symbolize life though plants and water and rocks.
5. Leixlip Manor and Gardens
The parkland at Leixlip Manor have been under constant restoration since 1999 and include a Victorian walled garden with somewhat exotic species of plants. The Manor is surrounded by a mixture of native hardwood and Californian Redwood trees, and for every one fallen tree, three species of hardwood tree are put in their place. An unofficial game sanctuary has evolved over the years and populated by pheasants, foxes, rabbits, hares, squirrels and birds.