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vert bar Archived NEWS FROM THE GARDENS
June 2005 to December 2009

The Interconnected Earth
December 16, 2009
To launch the International Year of Biodiversity, the Gardens is celebrating with a unique, specially commissioned piece of art that demonstrates the diversity of the Natural World. The Interconnected Earth is a 50 foot long banner depicting everything from pollen grains to blue whales all linked through the double helix of a DNA molecule. The banner is now on display in the National Botanic Gardens.

Read more . . .

Darwin Today – exhibition
November 30, 2009

This year marks the 200-year anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth and the 150-year anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. The National Botanic Gardens, in association with the British Council, presents ‘Darwin Now’, an exhibition that is both colourful and interactive, to be enjoyed by children and adults. Each exhibition panel tells its own story as you learn about Darwin, his findings and how his theory is relevant today.

Moth Survey
September 21, 2009

As part of our lead up to 2010 - The United Nations Year of Biodiversity - the Gardens has invited the Dublin Naturalists' Field Club to survey the moths of the National Botanic Gardens. To date two nights of trapping have produced over 50 records, and these can be viewed on the Club's website. . .

Read more here . . .
4th Global Botanic Gardens Congress: June 2010
August 27, 2009

The Global Botanic Gardens Congress is the premier international event for botanic gardens, held every three years. In June 2010, the 4th Congress will be held at the National Botanic Gardens in Dublin.

Visit the Congress website, ...

Self-Guided Summer Trail for Children
July 24, 2009

Come to the National Botanic Gardens and take our self-guided Summer Trail for Children. Pick up a map and question sheet at the Visitor Centre and follow the arrows around the garden. Answer the questions at each of the stops and return your completed answer sheet to the Visitor Centre to receive a small gift.

Botanic Gardens wins gold for Darwin at Home at Bloom 2009
June 3, 2009

The National Botanic Gardens won a gold medal at Bloom 2009 for its exhibit, which featured Charles Darwin with his wife Emma at Down House, surrounded by the plants and experiments that inspired his writings on evolution following the publication of the Origin of Species. ...

Read more here ...

Art Exhibition – Augustine Henry Plants
From 27th June to 4th August 2009

The National Botanic Gardens, in association with the Bath Society of Botanical Artists present an exhibition of botanical art, depicting plants from the life of Augustine Henry (1857-1930), the eminent botanical explorer and plant hunter.
The Bath Society of Botanical Artists, formed in 2002, is a dedicated group of amateur artists, who came together to further their interests in botanical art. They exhibit in the south west of England and further afield and have an annual exhibition, each summer, in Bath.

Darwin Exhibition at the Gardens
23rd February 2009

An exhibition of posters and books by and about Darwin has been opened at the Gardens. This year marks the 200th anniversary of his birth, and the 150th anniversary of the publication of the Origin of Species...

Visit the virtual exhibition here ...

Ireland's Wild Flowers
14th February 2009

The Gardens offers two 5-week evening courses on Irish Botany and how to identify wild flowers, in the spring. These are held on Tuesday evenings in April and May. The courses are designed to help participants identify Irish wild plants and explore the diversity of Ireland's common and rare wild flora. There are now three dedicated websites about Ireland's wildflowers, and a further three dealing with lichens, as well as a host of information on our own website here.

Read more here ...

Mr. Darwin's Study
9th February 2009

The influences and observations that Charles Darwin made in his lifetime led to his monumental discovery of the mechanism of evolution 150 years ago. To coincide with the 200th anniversary of his birth, we have built a re-creation of Darwin's study in the National Herbarium. This is open on weekdays only, between 9am and 5 pm.

Read more about the exhibition here ...

Ireland's Wild Orchids – a field guide
9th January 2009

Brendan Sayers (Foreman at the National Botanic Gardens) and the award-winning botanical artist Susan Sex, have recently completed their latest Irish Orchid book, a field guide to Ireland's Wild Orchids.

You can read more about the book and order copies from This richly illustrated book gives detailed keys and descriptions, with many original observations on distribution, ecology and biology.

Read more here ... Spring Watch 2009
8th January 2009

Spring Watch 2009 is an opportunity for all of us to contribute to recording the dates at which buds burst, flowers appear, bees emerge from hibernation and birds return from their winter migrations. Log onto Paul Whelan's site for recording everything from Road Kill to Lichens or Wildlife in your garden.
Read more here ...

Wollemi Pine cones at Glasnevin
4th December 2008

One of the world's oldest and rarest trees, the Wollemi pine (Wollemia nobilis) has begun to produce male cones at the Gardens.
Only discovered in 1994 in Australia this extraordinary tree has a fossil record stretching back 90 million years.
Read more here ...

Birds of Ireland: Facts, Folklore & History
22nd October 2008

Glynn Anderson, Guide & Information Officer at the National Botanic Gardens, has just publishe this remarkable book packed full of the most amazing pieces of information about Irish birds. The book is for sale at the Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre, and if you are lucky the author will be on hand to sign it!

More details about the book . . .

Event – Lab Coats and Lace
Saturday 15th November 2008

To celebrate Science Week (9-16th November), the National Botanic Gardens is hosting this event celebrating the lives and legacies of some inspiring Irish women scientists organised by WITS (Women in Technology & Science), with speakers Éanna Ní Lamhna, Dr Patrick Wyse Jackson, Anne Mac Lellan, Dr Peter Childs, Clara Cullen, and Prof Des MacHale.
When: 2.30-4.30 pm
Where: Education and Visitor Centre
WITS (women in Technology & Science) in association with the National Botanic Gardens
Admission free, all welcome

Lecture – Birds of Ireland: Facts, Folklore & History
Sunday 16th November 2008

Glynn Anderson will talk about his recent book at 3.00 pm
When: 3.00 pm
Where: Education and Visitor Centre
Admission free, all welcome

Mauge's shelled slug
3rd November 2008

This amazing shelled slug, which grows up to 12 cm in length was discovered in the National Botanic Gardens Car Park last month by Slug expert Gery Holyoak. It was last seen in Ireland in 1931, and before that in 1892.
Read more here ...

Twelve year old Puya flowers at the Gardens
21st July 2008

Puya alpestris flowers A Puya plant that has been growing for 12 years at the Gardens has finally flowered. This relative of the Pineapple from the Andes has huge, green flowers each of which is filled with up to a teaspoon-full of toffee-flavoured nectar.
Read more here . . .

Jade Vine flowers for the first time at Glasnevin
26th June 2008

Jade Vine Flowers The Jade Vine, from the forests of the Philippines, is one of the most spectacular of tropical lianas. It has been growing for the past 4 years in the Palm House, and this year it has flowered for the first time.
Read more here . . .

PhD Studentship at the National Botanic Gardens
2nd July 2008

Rare bryophytes in Ireland A fully funded PhD Studentship to study the Conservation and monitoring of legally protected and threatened bryophyte species in Ireland, is being offered by the National Botanic Gardens and Trinty College Dublin.
The aims of this fully funded project are to contribute to the conservation management of these species by assessing clonal growth, reproduction and population differentiation.

National Botanic Gardens Medal
14th May 2008

The National Botanic Gardens Medal was presented to Mary J.P. (Maura) Scannell in a small ceremony in the Director's House on the 14th May.
The medal was to mark the major contribution Maura has made over the past 50 years to both Irish Botany, and to encouraging many of Ireland's leading botanists of today.
Read more here . . .

PhD Studentship at the National Botanic Gardens
2nd May 2008

Germinating spores of Trichomanes speciosum A fully funded PhD studentship to study the Endangered Killarney Fern (Trichomanes speciosum) is being offered by the Natinal Botanic Gardens and Trinty College.
The aims of this project are to contribute to the conservation management of this species by assessing clonal growth, reproduction and population differentiation.

Hard Rain Exhibition
1st May 2008

A Nigerian Child in front of an ironwood tree trunk. Mark Edwards/ Still Pictures An outdoor exhibition that combines the lyrics of Bob Dylan's famous song Hard Rain with photographs that illustrate the issues defining the 21st century; climate change, poverty, pollution, habitat loss and human rights.
Runs until end of August. Free entry.
Read more here . . .

Royal Botanic Gardens of Jordan
28th April 2008

Quadrat recording at Tel al-Rumman A team of four from the National Botanic Gardens have recently returned from Jordan, where they have been assisting in developing a research programme at the Royal Botanic Garden at Tel al-Rumman, which lies 20 km north of Amman.
Read more here . . .

2008 - International Year of the Potato
10th April – 4th June

Spuds In celebration of the International Year of the Potato, the National Botanic Gardens has put together an exhibition on all aspects of the potato. Potatoes hold a remarkable place in Ireland's history, from one time staple food to the horror of the potato famine of the 1840s.
Come and learn about the potato, its origins in the high Andes mountains, the diversity of uses it is put to today, from Mr Potato Head to plates and forks, and learn about the future of this versatile crop.
The exhibition is free, and is open every day in the Gallery of the Visitor Centre.

The flora of the Lost World of Transylvania
29th March 2008

Transylvanian countryside Dr John Akeroyd is a freelance botanist, author and editor, who has been a regular visitor to Transylvania since 2000, working on the conservation of biodiversity and landscape in the Saxon Villages. He will give a public lecture at 3pm on Thursday the 3rd April at the Botanic Gardens.

Charles Darwin and the Galápagos Islands
12th February 2008

Link to the Complete works of Charles Darwin Today is the 199th anniversary of Charles Darwin's Birth (1809 - 1882). Darwin's legacy was his remarkable insight into how evolution operated. His theory, of Natural Selection, expounded in his book "On the Origin of Species" was a fundamental rethinking of everything in biology, and is still central to many scientific disciplines.
One of Darwin's most inspirational journeys was to the Galápagos Islands in the Pacific Ocean, and we are privileged to welcome Professor Ole Hamann, a former Director of the Charles Darwin Research Station in the Galápagos Islands, who will lecture to us on Friday 22nd February "On The Galápagos Islands, aspects of conservation and vegetation dynamics".

Around the World in 80 Cultures
2nd February – 27th February

Around the World in 80 Cultures exhibition An exhibition of ethnic art and artefacts exploring the diversity of local and ethnic cultures from around the world selected from the personal collection of Dr Peter Wyse Jackson, Director, National Botanic Gardens. Collected over more than twenty years, the exhibition includes objects from more than 30 countries - Voodoo paintings and wood-carvings from Haiti and the Caribbean, masks from South America, paintings and puppets from Indonesia, Vietnam and China and much more.

Climate Change - what will be the effects on our wild flowers?
22nd January 2008

Crambe maritima There are currently 143 threatened species of plant in Ireland. Taking into consideration the impacts of warmer drier summers and more severe winter weather, just over half of these species (74) may have their situation made potentially worse. In addition, 28 species that are currently not threatened in Ireland are likely to become so due to climate change.
Read more here . . .

Grace Pasley R.I.P. (1956-2007)
24th December 2007

Friends and colleagues have been saddened by the death of Grace Pasley on Christmas Eve. Grace has been the herbarium assistant and official photographer at the National Botanic Gardens for over 30 years.
Over the past three years she has shown an amazing poise and resilience while battling cancer. Grace's fortitude has been a shining example to all around her.
Her generosity and friendship was known to many at the Gardens as well as in other walks of life. Grace was never happier than when travelling overseas and taking photographs. Read more here

National Botanic Gardens Medal
14th December

The inaugural National Botanic Gardens Medal was presented to Paddy Reilly in a small ceremony in the Director's House on the 16th November.
The medal was to mark the contributions made by Paddy over the past 15 years to Irish Botany.
Read more here . . .

Library Webpage
12th December

The Library at Glasnevin contains a collection of more than 14,000 books and 800 Journals, as well as extensive archives relating to the history of horticulture in Ireland, and the flora of Ireland.
A number of catalogues are now available on the website.
Library home page . . .

Sculpture In Context
6th September – 19th October

More than 120 pieces of sculpture, the work of a hundred leading artists, are currently on display at the National Botanic Gardens. It is the 6th year that the Exhibition has been held at Glasnevin. .
read more here . . .

Augustine Henry: An Irish Botanist in China
Public Lecture by Matthew Jebb
Thursday 12th July 2007, 2.30 pm, Visitor Centre
Free admission

Augustine Henry was born 150 years ago on the 2nd July. He was a plant collector, physician, and forester. Aged 24 he travelled to China to take a post as assistant medical officer with the Imperial Chinese Customs Service. His explorations of Chinese Botany from 1882 to 1900 made him one of the most significant figures in beautifying the gardens of the west, by opening up the botanical riches of the Orient.
Matthew Jebb is taxonomist at the National Botanic Gardens and has walked in the footsteps of Augustine Henry in China in 2002.

Gardens wins Gold at Bloom
31st May 2007

Ireland's first horticultural and gardening festival - Bloom - took place in Phoenix Park over the June bank holiday weekend. The National Botanic Gardens won a gold medal for its stand - 'Cherishing Biodiversity'.
read more here . . .

300th Birthday of Carl Linnaeus
23rd May 2007

The 23rd of May is the 300th anniversary of the birth of swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus. Linnaeus introduced the science of naming living things, and brought plant identification to the masses with his extraordinary 'sexual system' for classifying plants.
read more here . . .

Giant Blooms in the Palm House
18th April 2007

The Provision Tree, or Money Tree (Pachira aquatica) is now in full bloom in the Palm House. The 35 cm long flower buds unwrap like a banana skin to reveal a spectacular bloom of delicate filaments that in the wild would attract bats which pollinate the flowers.
read more here . . .

Rooted in Ireland
15th March – 7th May

An exhibition of watercolours by Rodella Purves.
Specifically painted for the National Botanic Gardens at Glasnevin, these botanical portraits explore the botanical links between Scotland and Ireland. Rodella Purves, a Scotswoman with Irish links is a renowned botanical illustrator and has taken part in many prestigious exhibitions.

Can you identify this object?
7th March 2007

Item 71 in the Museum collections is a mystery to us. If you think can identify this wooden object, that was once on display in the National Museum up until 1970, then you could win a prize in an RTE competion.

See further pictures and competition details here . . .

'Flowers of Glasnevin' - Evening tours of the Palm House
26th January 2007

A photographic exhibition of plants from the National Botanic Gardens through the seasons, by Grace Pasley will run from 17-25th February.
The special evening launch at 7.30pm on Friday 16th February will include a wine reception and evening tours of the Great Palm House. Admission to the launch by ticket only: €15. All proceeds to: Adelaide, Meath and National Children's Hospital, Breast Care Centre.

Joseph (Jody) Murray R.I.P. (1944-2006)
7th December 2006

Friends and colleagues have been saddened by the sudden death of Jody Murray, Nursery Foreman, and gardener at the National Botanic Gardens since 20th May 1968.
Jody had an encyclopaedic knowledge of virtually every plant he saw, he was a true gentleman and inspiration to all who had the privilege of knowing him.

Learning from Nature
22nd November 2006

One way of getting rid of a problem is to eat it! and that is just what some of our plants have been doing to unwanted night time visitors. . .
Find out how our Gardeners are learning from nature when it comes to trapping insect pests in the glasshouses. Read more about it . . .

Halloween at Glasnevin
10th November 2006

On Saturday 4th November an event for children was organized. Attracting over 500 participants (children and parents), guided tours featured wizards and witches showing magical and mysterious plants in folklore from Ireland and throughout the world. Read more about it . . .

International Plant Conservation Experts meet in Glasnevin
25th October 2006

The National Botanic Gardens hosted an international meeting of experts from 23 countries over three days from 23-25th October. The meeting reviewed targets set by the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation and proposed actions for meeting these by 2010
Read more about it . . .

Botanic Gardens Expedition to Siberia
12th August 2006

This week a four-person team from the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin returned to Dublin following the successful completion of a 17-day botanical expedition to Siberia
Read more about it . . .

Sculpture in context 2006
12th September 2006

Sculpture In Context is the largest outdoor Sculpture exhibition held in Ireland, and this is the 5th year that the Exhibition has been held at Glasnevin. The sculptures on display are the work of more than one hundred leading artists, displayed in the beautiful surroundings of the National Botanic Gardens. Artists contributing to the exhibition are challenged to respond creatively to the Gardens and to specific locations in the Gardens. The exhibition runs until the 20th October.
Admission is free.

No more Rubbish at the National Botanic Gardens
22nd May 2006

Rubbish has been banned this week at the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin. As part of sustainability week, all the rubbish bins in the National Botanic Gardens are being sealed, and last weeks rubbish is on display.
Read more about it . . .

Innovative on-line science education project for schools, The Eco-Sensor Project, launched at the National Botanic Gardens
15th May 2006

An innovative science education project for schools was launched at the National Botanic Gardens on 15th May 2006, by Aoibhinn Ní Shúilleabháin, Rose of Tralee and Ambassador of the Discover Science & Engineering Programme.
Read more about it . . .

Sea Stock - an extinct plant returns ...
15th May 2006

A new educational display of the extinct Irish ‘Sea Stock’ is being established at the National Botanic Gardens as part of its native plant conservation and education programme on the threatened flora of Ireland.
Read more about it . . .

Jurassic Bark ! - the Evolution of the Plant Kingdom’
5th May to 16th June 2006

An exhibition of fossil plants and their living relatives will be on show in the Gallery of the Education & Visitor Centre.
Come along and view the amazing fossils that have been found in Ireland and see their living relatives.
Read more about it . . .

Nest Box Bonanza
14th March 2006

The lack of dying trees and overgrown hedgerows makes a well-kept garden a poor nesting site for many bird species. To remedy this the National Botanic Gardens has constructed a large number bird and bat boxes, which have been placed throughout the gardens. Read more about it . . .

Moringa – Africa's Miracle tree
20th February 2006

Irish gardener and television personality Diarmuid Gavin helped to launch Refugee Trust International's 'Buy a Miracle' campaign in the National Botanic Gardens. The moringa tree is a fast-growing and drought tolerant species, as well as being a truly multi-purpose tree, which provides edible foliage, firewood, medicinal extracts and soil stabilisation throughout India and the horn of Africa. Read more about it . . .

Darwin Day – February 12th
17th January 2006

February 12th is the anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin in 1809. The notion of evolution via genetic variation and natural selection, introduced by Charles Darwin, has become the central organizing principle in biology. The flowering of an Orchid in our glasshouses provides an example of the way in which Darwin extrapolated his own theories to make predicitions about the natural world. Read more about it . . .

Global Partnership for Plant Conservation
27th October 2005

The National Botanic Gardens hosted the 1st international conference of the Global Partnership for Plant Conservation from the 22 to 25th October 2005. The conference was formally opened by Mr Tom Parlon T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Finance with responsibility for the Office of Public Works, and included 120 participants from 37 countries. Read more about it . . .

Panel of Experts at Glasnevin
27th October 2005

On Wednesday 16th November a new type of event was held for the first time at the National Botanic Gardens. A staff team met as a Panel of Experts on gardening to answer queries and help solve problems for visitors to the National Botanic Gardens. The Panel of Experts will be available again in the New Year to help solve gardening queries and horticultural puzzles. Watch out for the date in the forthcoming 2006 Programme of Events.

Planting of the first Wollemi Pine in Ireland
10th September 2005

An Taoiseach, Mr Bertie Ahern T.D., planted the first Wollemi Pine in Irish soil on Saturday 10th September. Mr Ahern's visit to the gardens culminated a busy week of Heritage activites, including the construction, by Mayan craftsmen, of a traditional raiforest house in the recently restored Palm House. Read more about it . . .
Prehistoric tree comes to Ireland
2nd September 2005

The Wollemi Pine (Wollemia nobilis) is one of the world's oldest and rarest tree species belonging to a 200 million-year-old plant family. It was known from fossil records and presumed extinct until it was discovered in 1994 by a bushwalker in the Wollemi National Park just outside Australia's largest city, Sydney. Dubbed the botanical find of the century, the Wollemi Pine is closely related to the Monkey Puzzle tree.
Read more about it . . .
Extinct Plant goes back on show
26th July 2005

Encephalartos woodii one of our most treasured plants is back on show in the east wing of the Curvilinear house (right). As a South African plant it is an appropriate place to be growing it.
Encephalartos woodii has only ever been found once in the wild, what is more the only plants are male, which means this species, with no surviving females, is unable to reproduce, so technically it is already extinct.
Read more about it . . .
Tolka River Works
13th July 2005

A major restoration project is underway on the Tolka river banks inside the Botanic Gardens. The works, being undertaken by OPW are to protect the banks from the recent flood waters. The Tolka is a remarkable survivor in urban Dublin - Kingfishers are still breeding within the gardens, and an Otter was seen in the last few years.

I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows
8th July 2005

The Office of Public Works sponsored a free performance of William Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' perfomed by the Chapterhouse Theatre Company.

Palms: Indoors and out
4th July 2005

The Palm House surrounds are being relandscaped with outdoor plantings of palms. There are a surprising number of hardy palm species, including Washingtonias and Trachycarpus . . .

British and Irish Botanic Gardens adopt Plan to save endangered species of plant
8th April 2005

A new plan was developed and adopted by more than 80 delegates from British and Irish botanic gardens meeting this week at Glasnevin, to conserve all the endangered plant species in Britain and Ireland by 2010. . . . more