A recent visit to Mount Usher Gardens, Co Wicklow, was a delight in itself. Even on a dull dark day, its qualities shone through.
But there were many other aspects of this garden visit which made it such a pleasurable day out.
There are shops to browse in selling ice creams, clothing, gardening books, interior items …. but just one or two, this is not a pushy retail operation.
There is the well-stocked Bakery and Delicatessen, selling delicious Avoca products.
No need to cook after your garden visit – pick up a tasty meal to take home with you!
A charming outdoor seating area under the spreading trees offers an opportunity to pause for refreshment.
The Avoca Garden Cafe serves delicious food in a lovely setting, the indoor tables offering a striking view of the gardens.
Hard to resist the tempting array of fresh tasty cakes – a great mid-morning treat.
I often judge a visit by the attention to detail.
The jug of water, nicely presented with lemon and herbs, arrives on the table without asking.
The service is attentive and welcoming.
The signage is discreet and charming.
Even the Bathroom by the car park has a jolly planting scheme in front.
And old garden tools are displayed on the walls inside.
A final temptation awaits – the Garden Plant Shop.
Lots of choice plants and some vintage garden ornaments and tools.
Some garden visits are compromised by large-scale commercial operations, sometimes necessary for the upkeep of the gardens.
In my opinion, Mount Usher has it just right.
If you are thinking of visiting Ireland, please put it on your list.
It’s an easy drive from Dublin.
If you live in Ireland and you haven’t visited Mount Usher Gardens yet – a real treat awaits!
(All photography mine; feel free to use any of Jardin’s images but please credit and link back).