The Carlow Garden Trail currently features a collection of nineteen garden attractions which includes a mix of great old gardens, award-winning garden centres and nurseries, town-sized gardens more relevant to urban dwellers, community gardens, forest parks and tree trails. 

Activities of the Carlow Garden Trail are co-ordinated by the Carlow Garden Trail Committee, a not-for-profit organisation established in the mid-2000s, which includes representatives from all nineteen members on the trail. Chairperson of the Committee is Mr Robert Miller of Altamont Plant Sales and Walled Garden while Secretary is Mrs Mary Meaney of Leighlinbridge – the Garden Village.

Robert Miller with Roy Lancaster, Joe Swift and Paul Smyth
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To enhance and complement further the profile of the county’s well established gardening experiences, the Committee also organises the Carlow Garden Festival, an annual festival which starts on the last Saturday of July and runs for approximately ten days.


The History

These gardening experts have shared their passion, knowledge, and insights, enriching the gardening community, both beginner and advanced, and inspiring generations to cultivate their green spaces with care and creativity. In addition to sharing their expertise, our gardening experts have explored the latest trends, keeping audiences abreast of what’s happening in the ever-evolving world of gardening.

There from the start were Helen Dillon and Dermot O’ Neill (RIP), helpful and loyal supporters. Among our distinguished UK guests to date are renowned personalities such as Monty Don, known for his captivating presence on BBC Gardeners’ World, and Adam Frost, whose innovative designs have earned international acclaim. Carol Klein, with her infectious enthusiasm and James Wong, for his ethnobotany brilliance. Beacons of Irish gardening wisdom, Fionnuala Fallon and Jimi and June Blake have formed part of the line-up of great speakers.

Seamus O’Brien, Carl Wright, and Jekka McVicar have shared their botanical brilliance, while Aaron Bertelsen, Rory Newell, and Alys Fowler have delighted audiences with their fresh approaches to gardening.

From Troy Scott Smith’s elegant garden transformations to Dan Pearson’s harmonious landscapes, each expert brings a wealth of experience and innovation to the festival. Alasdair Moore, Paul Martin, Dermot O’Neill, and Monica Alverez have all contributed their expertise, enriching our community with their diverse talents and insights. And many others, equally insightful, but to many to mention.


As we continue to grow and evolve, the Carlow Garden Trail remains committed to fostering a vibrant gardening culture, where enthusiasts of all levels can come together to learn, explore, and celebrate the joy of gardening.