Ireland day 0582. Wednesday 03 May 2023- Mount Usher Gardens *

Ireland day 0582. Wednesday 03 May 2023- Mount Usher Gardens
Today’s summary Val did a litter-pick on Malahide beach first thing, while I had my last online physio session.   Then we drove down the M11 and spent the afternoon looking round Mount Usher Gardens at Ashford, which were excellent.   Video call to UK friends in the evening
Today’s weather Dry and bright with occasional sun.   Moderate south easterly wind.   Appx 15C
Today’s overview location
(The blue mark shows the location of our route)
Close-up location
(The blue line shows where we walked)
(Click button below to download GPX of today’s walk as recorded, or see interactive map at bottom with elevations corrected):
Mount Usher Gardens

(Summary blog only.   Last full blog was Day 0368).

Val wasn’t working today so as soon as we had had our cup of tea, listened to a podcast and got up, she decided to go down to the beach to do a litter pick.   In a massive act of public service she collected an impressive 4kg of waste on just a 3 km section of beach.   Well done Val!

While she was out, I had a video consultation with my physio – who seems pleased with my progress and only wants to see me once more – in a month’s time – then she will sign me off.   Then I spent an hour chatting to another friend back in London, by which time Val had returned from her public duty.

After a light lunch, we decided to head down to Co Wicklow and visit the Mount Usher Gardens.   It’s about an hour away round the M50 and as the weather was decent (i.e. not raining) and because we’d heard good things about it, we decided to make the journey.

We weren’t disappointed.   The gardens were lovely and beautifully laid out.  It was a good time to visit, too as the (rare) handkerchief tree was in full bloom, and the vivid azaleas were at their best.   We had a good look round and made use of the free audio guide, which was useful.   It was pretty quiet so it felt like we pretty much had the whole garden to ourselves.   Val got chatting to one of the gardeners and learned that amazingly there are only 3 full time and 3 part time gardeners to look after the whole 9 ha / 22 acres.

We stayed until it closed then drove back to Malahide (slowly – as the M50 was choc-a-bloc) in time for dinner and a video call with friends in the UK to arrange a holiday to the south west of Ireland hopefully in October.   All in all a great day!

Today’s photos (click to enlarge)

Entrance to the gardens.   It is leased by the Jay family to the Avoca group, which is owned by Aramark In the gardens – very mild microclimate and exceptionally lush green today
Val checking out the azalea walk The house – now, presumably unoccupied, but lived in by Madeleine Jay until she died in 2016
One of the many dazzling azaleas at their peak in the gardens today The river Dartry runs through the garden and is said to define it
Handkerchief Tree in full bloom.   They are very rare and quite hard to grow (they originate from China).   In fact this is one of only one or two that I have ever seen in my life.
Interactive map

(Elevations corrected at  GPS Visualizer: Assign DEM elevation data to coordinates )

Total distance: 2543 m
Max elevation: 31 m
Min elevation: 19 m
Total climbing: 41 m
Total descent: -41 m
Total time: 02:36:21
Download file: Mount Usher Gardens compressed corrected.gpx

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