Plan a trip to these two great garden plant sales

Home front: May is when historic gardens open to the public. Try these two

Main lawns and topiary at Glin Castle, Limerick

Main lawns and topiary at Glin Castle, Limerick

 

Head for romantic Glin Castle in Co Limerick where a rare and special plant fair will be held on Sunday, May 12th. There’ll be an opportunity to buy from about 40 specialist nurseries selling a wide range of unusual plants. Admission is €6 with under 12s going free, and includes access to the castle’s historic private gardens. Accommodation is available in Glin Castle on the night of Saturday, May 11th in advance of the sale. See rareandspecialplantfair.ie or glin-castle.com

Diarmuid Gavin will be among the speakers at Mount Congreve
Diarmuid Gavin will be among the speakers at Mount Congreve

Meanwhile Mount Congreve in Co Waterford will hold its first plant fair on May 19th when visitors have an opportunity to enjoy a unique guided tour experience in the 70-acre gardens, take in a talk on gardening with experts such as Diarmuid Gavin, stroll through the gardens’ 16km of pathways, and browse the plant fair which kicks off at 11am. A plant creche and local food stalls will also be available. Admission €7 per person. mountcongreve.com

Tented ceiling can be recreated with lengths of hessian. Photograph: Neptune
Tented ceiling can be recreated with lengths of hessian. Photograph: Neptune

Tent effect

If you’re lucky enough to have a greenhouse or conservatory big enough to entertain in, but you don’t want guests to bake under the sun, then this tented ceiling would work well. Simple lengths of hessian drop from the ceiling and are tethered to each side to create a cool effect with an earthy storeroom scent from the sacking. Hessian lengths can be bought for about €120 for a 50m roll (1.83m width) from sacks.ie which also sells heavy jute sandbags suitable as door stops. Simple burlap sacks come in different sizes should you wish to put people through their paces in a sack race. See sacks.ie. Oak table and benches from Neptune. Neptune.com

Aldi shelf unit
Aldi shelf unit

A neat shelf that won’t hang about

This shelf unit could get you out of a tight spot, providing a nice amount of hanging and stacking space in kitchen, bathroom, utility room or office. Made in durable, vintage-finish iron, the unit is part of a collection of homewares due to drop in Aldi on May 16th, which includes lighting, ethnic woven rugs, velvet footstools and drum bean cubes in geometric patterns. The shelf unit costs €34.99, while a matching iron welly stand is €29.99.