‘In the Heart of Ireland, a green jewel of world renown’
Eliana Ferioli ‘Great Gardens of Europe’
The gardens are home to an abundance of rare plants, collected by the Earls of Rosse on their travels around the world over the last 150 years. Within the 50 hectares you will find 50 champion trees, over 5000 species of plant as well as rivers, lake and waterfalls. It now has plant material collected and subscribed for by 3 generations of the family, as well as some of the most famous plant hunters, past and present. It was the first garden in Ireland to receive specimens of Metasequoia glyptostroboides (Dawn Redwood) after its discovery in China in 1945. Recent plant hunting expeditions by the current Earl and Countess include Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Iran, South Africa, New Zealand, China and Bhutan.
At the end of the camellia walk you will find the romantic hornbeam cloister walk, planted by Anne, Countess of Rosse in 1936 to celebrate her marriage to Michael, 6th Earl of Rosse. It boasts the world’s tallest box hedges along with an intricate design of hedging. Tucked away in an intimate courtyard is a pergola with a spectacular wisteria. A collection of old roses compliments the delphinium border in season.
Here you will get the best views of the Castle as you reach them along the Moat Walk. In summer they are a blaze of colour, full of a large range of herbaceous plants selected by Lady Rosse. You will look down over the river Camcor and view the 1820 suspension bridge, the earliest example of a wire-cabled suspension bridge in Europe. Opposite, under the yew tree, is the ancient well of St. Brendan.
Waterfalls, Tranquil Rivers and Lake
Water is a prominent feature of the Gardens. Wherever you walk you are always close to water. Cross over the enchanting waterfall above the gravity fed fountain in the Victorian Fernery, or follow the River Walk to the double bridges where the Little Brosna river and Camcor river meet. Take a stroll along the lake walk and discover Ireland’s oldest heronry that dates back almost 300 years!