The National Trust's Ulster Gardens Scheme leaflet for the Open Gardens scheme in 2017 is now available online.
Ulster Gardens Scheme 2017 Open Gardens
All funds raised help support the National Trust gardens in Northern Ireland
Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 May 2–5pm
Ballyalloly House, 19 Ballyalloly Road, Comber, BT23 5PN
Originally designed by the late Hugh Armitage Moore of Rowallane, this beautiful, mature garden of approximately 6 acres has a wide range of rare shrubs, mature trees, herbaceous plants and many other horticultural delights. The lawn sweeps down from the house to a large pond at the bottom of the garden. The damp area surrounding the pond is planted with swathes of candelabra primula, azalea, rhododendron and rodgersia. Bluebells have naturalised in abundance. Head gardener Adam McMurray will be in attendance. (Walking shoes or wellies are recommended).
Partially suitable for wheelchairs.
Location: From Comber, take the Saintfield Road; turn right after one mile on to the Hillsborough Road and right again after a further mile on to Ballyalloly Road. From Belfast, follow the Ballygowan Road from the Castlereagh Road for approximately 4 miles, turn left on to the B178 (junction of Ballygowan and Comber/Hillsborough
Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 May 2–5pm
Lorna and John Reid
3 Cedar Lane, Station Road, Craigavad, Holywood BT18 0BW
This true plantsman's garden is situated within the original estate of the historic Lorne House, built in 1875 by Henry Campbell, a wealthy linen merchant. This beautiful garden comprises formal planted beds containing a wide variety of perennials and shrubs, including rhododendrons and azaleas. A sweeping path leads to a wooden area containing a wide range of mature specimen trees planted in the Victorian era. Under the tree canopy grows a variety of wild flowers including slipper orchids, anemone, and bluebells. One of the features of the garden is the walk along the Glen River with a number of charming waterfalls.
Location: From Belfast take the A2 towards Bangor. Go past the Culloden Hotel and the Folk and Transport Museum. At the next set of traffic lights turn left down Station Road (Craigavad). Cedar Lane is the third lane on the left. Plant Stall
Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 June 2–5pm
Lord and Lady Anthony Hamilton
Killyreagh House, 8 Ballylucas Road, Tamlaght, Enniskillen, BT74 4HX
Mixed informal gardens with abundant herbaceous borders and flowering shrubs. Lawns and paths lead through mature camellia, magnolia and rhododendron under-planted with vinca ‘major’, white daffodils, trillium etc (this area is attractive, natural and wild, but no longer in flower by June). There are also beautiful views over surrounding fields, woodland and hills, woodland walks, azaleas etc. and a vegetable garden.
Location: From Enniskillen take the B80 towards Tempo. After approximately 1.5 miles turn right, signposted Killyvilley, stay on this road for approximately 1.25 miles and at T Junction turn left, garden 150 yards. From Dungannon take the M1 and A4 towards Enniskillen. At Fivemiletown mini roundabout take second exit onto Murley Road, follow road to the left and then take the next right onto Clabby Road, B107. At roundabout turn left, signposted Tempo and Enniskillen. Go through Tempo and take right hand fork signposted Enniskillen B80. Stay on this road for approximately 5 miles from Tempo and then turn left, follow Ulster Gardens Scheme signs. Parking in field.
Plant Stalls / Teas
Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 June 2–5pm
Dawn and Ken McEntee
Old Barrack House, 7 Main Street, Hillsborough, BT26 6AE
Old Barrack House garden is in essence a secret garden, hidden away behind the Old Barrack House, a grade 1 listed building on Main Street in Hillsborough village. Venturing down the alley between the houses you reach the cobbled yard and barn. Over the years Dawn and Ken have subtly changed and improved the yard, garden and buildings to create the now charming collection of pebbled terraces and garden rooms that keep you guessing as you proceed further down the garden. Dawn is an artist and garden designer, and that creative instinct is much in evidence, as plants are chosen for height form and colour of leaf and flowers, in relation to the ambience of each area. You may have seen this garden on the TV show ‘Greatest Gardens’ where Dairmuid Gavin and Helen Dillon critiqued nine gardens. Dawn and Ken’s garden won its heat, and Dairmuid described it as a little bit of heaven, a must see!
Location: Main Street, Hillsborough opposite the Parish Church. Dawn and Ken live in the Old Barrack House - the only house with Wisteria across it.
Plant Stall / Teas Private tours also available (10 persons minimum). Telephone for appointment on 028 9268 2329. Refreshments can be provided on request at time of booking.
Plant Stall / Teas
Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 July 2–5pm
Hugh Jackson and Judith O’Keeffe
30A Ballynulto Road, Glenwherry, BT42 4RJ
Since opening for the Ulster Gardens Scheme in 2013, Hugh and Judith have extended their prairie style garden, nestled in a fold of moorlands south of Slemish Mountain to include a newly planted woodland. Designed to take full advantage of the surrounding landscape, the mass planting of trees and layers of colourful herbaceous plants add to the spectacular views from the site. By retaining and extending the dry stone walls characteristic of the area; using largely native trees and hardy perennials to overcome the sometimes difficult growing conditions, and installing sustainable elements into their recently built house; the owners have succeeded in creating a wonderfully comfortable home and garden in a location that is, somewhat ‘off the beaten track’. Partially suitable for wheelchairs.
Location: From the A36 Ballymena to Larne road, a half mile east of its junction with the B94, turn north onto the Ballynulto Road. The garden is 0.8 miles on the right.
Plants Stall & Teas
Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 July 2–5pm
Mr and Mrs D I Page
Billy Old Rectory, 5 Cabragh Road, Castlecat, Bushmills, BT57 8YH
A mature garden of three acres on an historic site. To the front of the Georgian rectory is a large lawn with mature trees, a small peace garden, an ancient well and a developing woodland garden with a small fernery leading to a secret garden. To the rear of the house is another large lawn with contrasting borders of roses, herbaceous plants and shrubs, as well as an attractive pond area. A wooden rustic fence separates the long herbaceous border from the kitchen garden, with greenhouse, herb, vegetable and fruit gardens. Beyond the lawn is a large old orchard and an experimental area with wildflowers and annuals. Partially suitable for wheelchairs. Location: From Ballymena take A26 towards Ballymoney. On Ballymoney by-pass go straight on at Kilraughts roundabout and then at Portrush Road roundabout take third exit, BT62 Portrush. Continue on this road, enter Ballybogey and turn right, signposted B67 Ballycastle. Continue on to Derrykeighan and turn left. Continue to Castlecat and turn right, signposted Billy 0.5 mile and then immediately fork left on to Haw Road. Continue to church and park on Haw Road. Garden is on the right on Cabragh Road. From Coleraine take Ballycastle Road (B67). At T junction turn right and then next left, Benvarden Road. At Derrykeighan turn left, signposted Bushmills and on to Castlecat, from there follow directions as above
Plant Stall / Teas
Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 August 2–5pm
Mr Andrew and Mrs Heather White
Summerhill, 77 Mullavilly Road, Tandragee, Craigavon, BT62 2LX
A mature plantsman’s garden of one acre with an interesting collection of plants sourced from Ulster Gardens Scheme plant stalls over the last 30 years. It has been developed around a traditional farmyard. There are formal and informal areas of trees, shrubs, roses, clematis and herbacaceous plants which have been established in artistic combinations to give seasonal interest. It also contains raised beds for vegetables and propagation. Mostly suitable for wheelchairs.
Location: On the A27 main Portadown to Tandragee Road approximately 3 miles from Portadown and 2 miles from Tandragee. Leave the A27 at Ballylisk roundabout signposted to Laurelvale. Garden is 0.25 miles on left hand side beside Mullavilly Parish Church.
Plant Stall / Teas
Ulster Gardens Scheme Review Evening
Thursday 16 November 2017 at 7.30pm
The Old Courthouse, Antrim
Join members of the Ulster Gardens Scheme Committee and garden owners for our very popular annual review, when we look back at another successful season’s garden visiting on behalf of the National Trust, and enjoy a light supper.
Admission: A charge of £5 per person will be made, to avoid a drain on National Trust funds.
Pre-booking is essential, as numbers are strictly limited.
Contact The Old Courthouse on 028 9448 1338 to ensure a reservation