In the magical setting of Knappogue Castle, the walled garden is a romantic oasis to sit and muse or just escape the ‘madding crowd’. Dating from 1817, the beautiful 1.76 acre garden is now restored to its former splendour. The tall and imposing walls of the walled garden, have now been refurnished with climbing roses, grapevines and many clematis varieties.
The beautiful garden lies a short distance to the North West of the castle. There is an imposing arched cart entrance carrying a keystone inscribed 1817, which would appear to date the garden. The tall and imposing, recently recapped walls of the garden are approximately 4.26 M high. Completely built of stone with no inner brick lining, they are now adorned with climbing roses, grapevines and fig trees. The north west, north east and south east corners of the wall are gently rounded, to facilitate the growing of fruit, which was a common feature of walled gardens of the late 18th and 19th century .
The Walled Garden today has been carefully restored in the Victorian style. This is evidenced by the rectangular plots and system of paths, typical of the Victorian appreciation of order and symmetry.
Originally this would have been a productive garden, providing fruit, vegetables and flowers for the house, typical of demesnes of this kind. A large walled garden was an essential requirement for such an establishment, not alone to supply the residence with produce, but to enjoy also as pleasure grounds
Early maps indicate that the garden was surrounded by extensive open parkland, ornamental ponds and a large orchard which, unfortunately, have not survived the passage of time. The doorway on the west wall once led to an orchard and a doorway on the south wall led to the shrubbery and pleasure grounds.
The garden's centrepiece - Bacchus, the Greek God of Wine, reflects the former epicurean philosophy & lifestyle of the mediaeval castle. The garden’s main features include the pergola, the tranquil gazebo, the rockery with fernery, shrubberys and pathways lined with herbaceous borders. The garden supplies the Castle with fresh herbs for daily use in the preparation of the mediaeval banquet.
Maps dated 1840 and 1920 show a small rectangular building at the South West Corner of the garden. Remains of the brick fireplace with a stone flue are still visible to this very day. This provides evidence that it was a small ‘Bothy’ which would have provided shelter for the gardeners and their equipment.
On the North Wall of the garden, you will see the remains of plastering, which shows evidence of a lean-to glasshouse. It was placed on this wall, facing south to catch maximum sun. It is impossible to determine if it was heated or not as there are no traces of piping or a boiler. The glasshouse is not shown on the 1840 and may therefore be late Victorian.
"Knappogue Walled Garden was developed with financial assistance from The European Regional Development Fund 1994 - 1999, under the Great Gardens of Ireland Restoration Programme with the assistance of FAS and administered by Shannon Development"