Rare and special plant fair to be held in Athy's Burtown House

May 13

Paula Campbell

Reporter:

Paula Campbell

Email:

paula@leinsterleader.ie

Rare and special plant fair to be held in Athy's Burtown House

James Fennell with his wife and Francis Brennan

The Rare and Special Plant Fair, will be held this year in  Burtown House and Gardens, Athy on Sunday, May 13 from 10am to 5pm.

Up to 40 Specialist Nurseries will offer and showcase beautiful, unusual and hard to find varieties of plants for sale, as well as giving advice on care and growing.

The Rare and Special Plant Fair was established in 2001 with the assistance of Bord Bia, to ensure that the gardening public has an opportunity to purchase rare and difficult to source plants, while at the same time visit a garden of note that they may not otherwise visit.

The acclaimed botanical artist Wendy Walsh,lived at Burtown until the age of 99, and as a special feature of the Rare and Special Plant Fair, there will be an exhibition of her botanical works in The Green Barn gallery. Many of the special plants that she painted can be found in the gardens of Burtown. This exhibition will be a selection of her work on view especially for the Fair.

Visitors to The Rare and Special Plant Fair will have free entrance to the gardens and sculpture park.

There will be fresh healthy artisan food stalls, using organic produce grown at Burtown, delicious coffee, tea and light snacks, wood fired pizzas all day & the award winning Green Barn Restaurant, and live music by Urban Street Project.

Built in 1710 by Quakers and still lived in by the decedents, Burtown is one of two houses in Kildare from the 18th century to have never been sold. Surrounded by 12 acres of flower, woodland and kitchen gardens, with sculpture parks set in old meadows, and with the award winning Green Barn restaurant, Burtown is a magical place to visit full of old world heritage, gardens, art and the very best of Irish food, which is almost all completely grown on site.

The gardens at Burtown are unusual in that they have been worked by three generations ofthe family; the late Wendy Walsh, one of Ireland’s finest botanical artists; Wendy’s daughter the painter Lesley Fennell, and her son James, a professional photographer.