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Parks & Gardens in Donegal

Activities

Donegal is a County blessed with such a diverse range of public and private parks and gardens. From carefully tended intimate cottage gardens to public parks and woodlands, Donegal has a wealth of peaceful havens for lovers of flowers and trees. Donegal Garden Trail promotes garden visiting as a collective effort in County Donegal, encouraging garden visiting as an educational and leisure activity.

Donegal Garden Trail: Summy

Close to the coast in scenic west Donegal and surrounding a traditional farmhouse, this garden was established in 1979 in a valley on a rocky hillside surrounded by four acres of native hazel woodland with blackthorn, juniper, burnet rose, ash and oak. Native primroses, bluebells, orchids and varied ferns abound. Emphasis has been placed on the blending of nurture with nature and the provision o…

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Donegal Garden Trail: Cluain na dTor Seaside Garden

This is Donegal’s tropical garden, inspirational and boldly experimental! This garden also specialises in plants tolerant of seaside conditions. ‘Cluain na dTor’ meaning “meadow of the shrubs” - an apt place-name - shrubs as shelter and as ornamentals populate this garden with surrounding natural wildflower meadows. Twenty years in the making, a wonderfully eclectic mix of individual specimens ar…

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Donegal Garden Trail

Founded in 2006, and opening our gates for the first time in the spring of 2007, we are an association of Public and Private Gardens. In 2019 we will have 22 member gardens spread throughout County Donegal from Innishown to Kilcar. Many private gardens proudly collect donations for local charities. Our membership includes long established historic gardens as well as newly made gardens. We are …

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Donegal Garden Trail: Salthill Garden

Salthill is well illustrated in “The Irish Garden” (2015) by Jane Powers with photographs by Jonathon Hession. She aptly describes the space “The 0.5 hectare enclosure has that delightful feeling of privacy and mystery that is particular to old walled gardens”. So, come and witness the “great gatherings of herbaceous plants amid mature shrubs and noteworthy trees”. Admission: €5 Adults, €2 …

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Salthill Gardens

Salthill House is an intact early 18th Century house overlooking Donegal Bay, complete with the original enclosed yard and walled garden. Since 1985 the one acre kitchen garden has been transformed into a series of lovely mixed flower borders with a wide selection of new and interesting plants.

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Donegal Garden Trail: St Columbs

Built in the early 19th century for the Church of Ireland Rector, St. Columb’s overlooks the shores of Lough Gartan. The house and grounds were transformed into a haven of artistic beauty by the late Derek Hill who planted many rare and unusual trees and shrubs. Hill was assisted by James Russell of Sunningdale Nurseries “ Russell and myself aimed to accentuate simply the natural formation of …

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Donegal Garden Trail: Carrablagh House

Carrablagh is an outstanding example of a well established country garden dating back to the mid 19th century. Set on the eastern cliffs of the Fanad peninsula where Lough Swilly meets the North Atlantic Ocean. Surrounding woodlands protect the specimen plantings within. This most intimate, classic Irish Robinsonian garden has a magical atmosphere, sheltering its botanical treasures in a series of…

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Donegal Garden Trail: Browns Farm

This garden surrounds a small house with flower borders, grassy paths and many seats each with a special view. Children are very welcome and there are maps for exploring paths and woodland passage ways. There are places for picnics or sheltering from raindrops. Admission: €5 to charity Directions: Take N56 from the centre of Glenties (direction Portnoo) for approx 8km. Take left turn on to …

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