I was extremely grateful that two very very busy men, Head Gardener Martin Timony and Assistant to the Head Gardener John Wallace agreed to give a tour to some of the Donegal ETB Fetac 5 Horticulture crew of the gardens and grounds of the 5 star Solis Lough Eske Castle Hotel, located just outside Donegal Town. And I mean it when I say busy, these two men are responsible for the 40+ acres which make up the gardens and grounds around Donegals only 5 start hotel. The students were interested in how the management of the gardens accommodated the hotel guests, how the team manage the historical parkland and how they manage the modern menace of invasive species. The group were also treated to Martin giving an insight into what his development plans were for the gardens, with new planting schemes being planned to further enhance the visitor experience at Solis Lough Eske Castle Hotel.
Visits like this are a wonderful way for the students to meet industry professionals and to discuss management issues and real-life scenarios. These all help to put the theoretical learning into practice. And I am extremely grateful for guys like Martin and John sharing their enthusiasm and experience with the group.
Recently I enjoyed a wonderful walk through the grounds of the 5 star Solis Lough Eske Castle, just outside Donegal Town. It was April since the last visit there (April walk in Solis Lough Eske Castle), and since then the weather and the micro climate in the walled gardens have allowed the grounds to put on some fabulous growth, and there was even some Autumnal colours starting to show on some of the plants, most notable a virginia creeper. Enjoy the wee slide show below, but the best way to enjoy these gardens is to make a point of visiting the Solis Lough Eske Castle, get a nice cappuccino and sit outside and enjoy the view!
Gardening on Radio Foyle
A summary of each weeks gardening on Mark Patterson Show and beyond