The National Botanic Gardens of Ireland.

Collars up, a biting February wind, and a brisk walk around botanical gardens with the reward of sultry temperatures in the glasshouses, always lifts the spirits. The beautiful National Botanic Gardens of Ireland, in Glasnevin, are a mere 3 km from Dublin’s bustling city centre.


Autumn by the river, Glasnevin.

Founded in 1795, the lovely gardens have the benefit of the Tolka river flowing through them, creating opportunities for contemplative reflection, or excitement as the water rushes over the weir.


The role of the gardens is “to explore, understand, conserve, and share the importance of plants.We aim to make the National Botanic Gardens a place where leisure, recreation and education are all compatible for the enjoyment of our visitors.” Entrance to the gardens is free which ensures it is well used by locals.


The winding path through the herbaceous borders invites you to explore.

It is a centre for research and conservation; indeed, it was the botanist David Moore who first noted potato blight in Ireland at Glasnevin on 20th August 1845 and predicted that the impact on the potato crop would lead to famine in Ireland – which subsequently reduced its population by almost 25%. He continued to investigate the cause of the blight and correctly identified it as a fungus but narrowly missed finding a remedy.


Ferns unfurling, one of the sculptures in the woodland.

Development continues each year, including the Viking house and garden, made of oak, ash and hazel, alluding to Dublin’s Hiberno-Norse heritage of the 8th-10th centuries.


Viking house and garden, Glasnevin


But it is to the wonderful glass structures of the 19th century Palm House and its glass companions that the feet turn in winter, to savour the sultry, steamy atmosphere and absorb the colours of the tropics.


Tropical Oasis

Keeping warm in the glasshouses, Glasnevin.


Strelitzia reginae ‘Mandela’s Gold’.


For seven years, I lived a stone’s throw from the Botanic Gardens. They were a refuge and a haven from the city. How I still miss them.

The National Botanic Gardens of Ireland.


2 thoughts on “The National Botanic Gardens of Ireland.

  1. Lovely indeed! We visited Ireland in 2015 and thought we included a wonderful itinerary of outdoor delights. Cannot fathom how we missed the chance to see this gem! 😦 I guess we were distracted by Glendalough and then Powerscourt. There are so many wonderful garden adventures in Ireland I guess we will just have to return there to see more! 😀 – Kathryn

    Liked by 1 person

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