“A View from the Palm House” – Matthew Jebb at Malone House

Maeve Bell, Chairperson IGPS Northern Ireland, welcoming Matthew Jebb and those attending to the talk at Malone House.

In his talk ‘A View from the Palm House’, Matthew Jebb, Director of the National Botanic Gardens, entranced a large audience in Belfast with a series of inter-connections between art, architecture, plants, people, invasive species, climate change and much more besides.

A wonderful attendance at Matthew’s talk

Perhaps the most stunning moment was when he produced the seeds of the entire flora of the island of Ireland – all contained in a match box. IGPS  members were joined by some of the staff from Belfast Botanic Gardens and committee members of the Friends of  Belfast Botanic Gardens for the event in Malone House, kindly made available by Belfast Parks Department, its stunning seasonal decorations adding to everyone’s enjoyment

A moment to amaze the audience – this matchbox contains seed from all the flora of the island of Ireland. Matthew is showing them to Billy McCone, IGPS Chairperson


The raffle at these talks is always great fun. Among the prizes on this occasion was a selection of daffodils from Brian Duncan and they attracted great attention. Here is Pat Cameron, one of the winners in the raffle with her prize, Astelia chathamica ‘Silver Spear’.


And, finally, it is always enjoyable to finish off a good night with a welcome cup of tea

Many thanks to Maeve Bell and Barbara Kelso for the fabulous photographs and write-up on the night.

Matthew Pottage, at IGPS Munster

Matthew Pottage, Curator of RHS Garden Wisley, delivered a very interesting talk to IGPS members and guests in Cork this evening. He gave a brief outline of the history of the Royal Horticultural Society with particular reference to the garden at Wisley, an overview of the gardens as they are at present and an outline […]


Matthew Pottage: “Wisley – The New Chapter of the Flagship Garden of the RHS!

IGPS Munster – Tuesday next, 7th November: Matthew Pottage at Northridge House, St Luke’s Home Mahon Cork See “Events”  for full details


‘Portraying Ireland’s Garden Plants’

The Irish Society of Botanical Artists would like to invite all IGPS members to the talk by Charles Nelson on Saturday 18 November at 2.00pm in the Visitor Centre Auditorium at the National Botanic Gardens. The title of the talk is ‘Portraying Ireland’s Garden Plants’. I know that you have an event yourselves at the […]


Fota Island – an IGPS Visit

We were delighted to have a good number of members join us for our guided tour of Fota Island gardens with Head Gardener, David O’Regan, on Saturday, 14th of October last. David met us at the house and gave us a wonderfully informative introduction to our walk with a history of the estate, the house […]


IGPS Leinster Plant Sale Coming Soon!


A Visit to Áras an Uachtaráin

IGPS Leinster organised an outing to Áras an Uachtaráin on the 9th of September. Though attendance was limited to 40 there were members from all regions present and we had a very pleasant day. The visit was made special by the head gardener who gave us a very informative guided tour and entertained us with […]


30th Anniversary at The Rectory Garden

The warm sunny afternoon of 9th August saw an impressive turnout of IGPS members and gues ts to celebrate the 30 year partnership between the rectory garden volunteers and the Ulster Folk and Transport museum. A virtual horticultural who’s who; the guests, many of whom had been involved in the early days of creating the […]


Garden visit to Aughentaine Estate, July 2017

Sixty- two members and guests of the IGPS had a wonderful day out to Aughentaine Estate, on the outskirts of Fivemiletown, County Tyrone, home of James and Caro Hamilton Stubber.  It was a beautiful sunny day, we enjoyed a lovely picnic lunch on the front terrace and afterwards Caro very kindly treated us to a […]


July Events 2017

Read what’s coming up this month in IGPS activities: July News!


Doreen Wilson’s Garden, July 2017

Doreen and Ivan Wilson came to a new house on a hill above Dundonald between Belfast and Newtownards some 36 years ago. It was sitting in a “…barren, wind-swept field”. This is hard to believe today as the garden they have made is filled with unusual shrubs and trees, eye-catching colour combinations, a lushly planted […]


Visit to Knox Gass Garden

  This is a relatively new garden and is already overflowing with interesting plants. Knox has grown quite a lot from seed or cuttings with stunning results. Every habitat of the garden has appropriate species from the Gunnera at the bog garden to the house gables covered with Fremontodendron, Roses and Hypericum  in stunning yellows. […]


Visit to Tourin House and Lismore Castle

Many thanks to Sara Whelan who was part of the IGPS Munster outing to Tourin House and Lismore Castle on Saturday, 20th May, for forwarding these photographs from the day. This first group is of Lismore Castle:   And this second group is from Tourin House:


Annual General Meeting, Birr, 2017

Reports are coming in on the A.G.M. weekend in Birr with some members posting images on Facebook with their comments. It would seem there was some rain but that this did not dampen spirits and that it was a very enjoyable weekend. Certainly some of the private comments on the garden were simply gushing in […]


Heritage Irish Plants Launch: Opening Remarks by Martyn Rix

On November 22 2016 the Irish Society of Botanical Artists and the Irish Garden Plant Society had the great honour of welcoming Martyn Rix to the National Botanic Gardens. Martyn had generously accepted the invitation to come to launch Heritage Irish Plants – Plandaí Oidhreachta. As the time for speeches approached, the crowd of attentive […]


Mount Congreve – A National Treasure

IGPS Munster hosted Paddy Tobin with his talk on Mount Congreve Gardens at their new venue at Northridge House, St. Luke’s Home, in Blackrock. There was a very good attendance and the talk will certainly entice people to make the journey to Waterford to visit these excellent gardens. Mount Congreve Gardens are hosting the Rare […]


The Story of Blarney Castle

Adam Whitbourn at the Old Courthouse in Antrim.                                           Photo from Barbara Kelso About 80 members and friends thoroughly enjoyed Adam Whitbourn, Head Gardener at Blarney Castle, telling the story of the Castle’s gardens at […]


Things That Turn Nick Macer On!

There was a large turn out of IGPS members and guests for Nick Macer’s talk on the 24th of January in Cork. Nick has travelled extensively in search of new and interesting plants and has introduced many of these through his Pan Global Plants Nursery. He presented his plants in groups “Small”, “Big”, “Bigger” and […]


Colin Crosbie – “Shady Characters”

Thanks to the kind invitation of the Alpine Garden Society, Northern members had the opportunity to enjoy a lecture by Colin Crosbie on ‘Shady Characters’ on the afternoon of Saturday 21st January. It was entertaining and informative, full of useful recommendations for good ‘doers’ in shade, whether dappled or deep which, as he pointed out, […]


The Bay Garden – A talk by Frances McDonald

A report from Maeve Bell on a very enjoyable evening in Belfast! There was a packed room at Malone House Belfast on Wednesday 7th December to hear Frances MacDonald, so much so that there had to be a short delay while extra chairs were fetched and installed. Frances delighted the audience with her account of […]