Dr David Robinson Memorial Lecture Event at Powerscourt Estate

On the 25th October we hosted the annual David Robinson Memorial Event at Powerscourt estate which invited horticultural students from north and south to attend a lecture along with a tour of the gardens, golf course and garden pavilion. Myself and my assistant Will Stapleton took groups around our historic gardens. Students learnt about the rich and diverse gardening history including champion specimen trees and exquisite statues  and metal work.

The tour started at the top of the steps in the formal Italian garden with the iconic Sugarloaf Mountain in the background with a brief history of the estate and previous owners and their contributions to the gardens. We explained the yearly task of maintaining these gardens and what areas we have been focusing on, primarily the rejuvenation of our formal lawns after the severe drought that the summer of 2018 brought and our techniques to ensure minimal damage in the future should this strike again.

Next the group was brought through the chorus gates and into the memorial gardens full of old English roses and walled gardens including our double herbaceous border which in the summer months is a hive of activity with colours and smells. The students were explained how these areas have transformed from a very practical fruit vegetable and herb garden into a more pleasure garden in more recent times and described how in the herbaceous border we were planning to plant over 14000 tulips of 14 different varieties that will illuminate the border for our tulip festival in the spring.

We then moved from the formal part of the garden through the English gate to the dolphin pond where I showed my favourite tree in the gardens.. Ilex aquifolium “pendula”( weeping holly) a magnificent specimen of about 160 years old and described how its architecture and clear grafting line excites me every time I see it. I explained how ahead of their time the gardeners during this period were with the use of such an advanced  propagation technique.

The tour concluded at the bottom of the Triton Lake with yet another iconic Powerscourt view as your vision is swept up the impressive steps of the Italian garden to the Palladian style mansion of the main house. Here I explained future plans for the gardens including a sweeping prairie meadow towards the Sugarloaf and the opportunities to open up lost vistas in the gardens allowing the plants and hard features to guide visitors around.

Students were then treated to a demonstration and talk by our golf course superintendent Paul Farren who explained the regular maintenance and upkeep it takes to present two champion golf courses and the importance of nutrition to maintain a healthy balance, students were treated to machine demonstration by Paul and his team, and by all accounts they were exposed to pure levels of agronomy that Paul has developed and perfected over the years.

To finish up students hopped over to the garden pavilion where manager Brian Berry gave a rundown of the retail side of a garden center and what it takes to present an extremely eye pleasing masterpiece of displays and vast variety of plants that complement the overall experience of the estate.

In conclusion students witnessed the three main areas the estate has to offer and how the various departments work tirelessly to present powerscourt estate to the public visitor and the balance it takes to respect the heritage of the site.

    – Alex Slazenger, Head Gardener at Powerscourt Estate

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Powerscourt Estate

*COVID Update – April 2021* 

Further to the government announcements, the Powerscourt Estate team is pleased to inform you  that from Monday 12th April we will be able to welcome visitors from the rest of County Wicklow, and those living within 20km of Powerscourt Estate.

In line with the latest Government guidelines, we can welcome back visitors and annual members to enjoy the Gardens, Waterfall and Riverwalk (members only). The Garden Pavilion is also open for essential retail. The Golf Club will reopen to members from the 26th April.

During April the Gardens are open from 9.30 to 17.30 and the Waterfall from 10.30 to 17.30, with last admission 30 minutes before close.

The Avoca Food Hall is open 7 days a week (9.30 am – 5.30 pm). Avoca Outdoor Hatch is open for takeaway coffee, toasted sandwiches & treats 7 days a week (10.00 am – 4.00 pm). Avoca Pizza Van in the Courtyard is open Fridays, Saturday & Sundays from 12 noon – 3.30 pm.

The following facilities will remain closed for the duration of the latest restrictions.

Avoca Café Restaurant
Avoca Retail (Visit avoca.com for details)
The Design Loft
Neptune by Global Village
Powerscourt Hotel
Powerscourt Distillery
Cool Planet Experience

To keep you and our staff safe we continue to facilitate social distancing, hand sanitizing and other safety measures.

Further updates will follow in the coming weeks as guidelines are adjusted.

Best wishes, ⁠⁠

Powerscourt Management⁠