GARDENS OF LAOIS
Emo Court Gardens
These renowned gardens were first laid out in the 18th Century.
Emo Court itself was built in 1790 to the neo-classical design of
James Gandon for the Earl of Portarlington. The gardens are known
for their sweeping formal lawns, statuary and fine trees. They
also contain many woodland walks and exotic shrubs as well as a
nine-hectare lake which is being carefully restored. Walking
enthusiasts regularly enjoy a variety of delightful routes such as
the Beech Walk, Margaret's Walk, Via Davida, the Apiary Walk and
the Clucker Walk. Admission to the Gardens is Free.
There is an admission charge to the Historic House of Emo Court.
Emo Court is one of the finest stately homes in these islands.
Guided Tours are available. House open May - Sept.
Heywood Gardens - 'The Secret Garden'
In an elegant eighteenth century park with fine trees and lakes,
Sir Edward Lutyens designed a series of interlinked gardens in the
early years of this century. This creation is regarded as one of
his greatest achievements. A central formal lawn flanked by
herbaceous borders overlooks the undulating park and countryside.
To one side a hidden pergola overlooks the lake and on the other
side an allee of lime trees leads to an oval pool garden. This
delightful walled enclosure presided over by a pavilion descends
in a series of planted terraces to a central pool. A mural stair
give access to a series of small gardens enclosed by yew hedges.
Heywood Gardens are known as the essential 'Secret Garden' and are
one of the finest in Ireland.Admission is Free
Gash Gardens, Castletown
Located on the banks of the river Nore, Gash gardens are the
splendid creation of long-time horticulturalists, the Keenan
family. The four acres feature a large rock garden with rare
alpines, a fernery, a river walk and many specimen trees. The
gardens have a number of interesting water features, including the
'Moon House' where visitors sit beneath a waterfall. Open
May-October, Monday to Saturday 10-5 Sundays 2-5.
Abbey Sense Garden, Abbeyleix.
Located in the old walled garden of the Brigidine Convent (founded
in 1842), the Abbey Sense Garden is organised around the five
senses. Plantings include a herb garden, a scent garden and many
water features. All plants are propagated and maintained by people
with learning disabilities. Open year round, Monday to Thursday
from 9am to 5pm and on Fridays from 9am to 4pm. From 1 June 1
until 30 September, the gardens are also open on Saturdays,
Sundays and Bank Holidays from 2pm to 6pm.