087 2737883 | 087 2728337 info@gashgardens.ie
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The Garden Story

Our Story
The Owners
Our Nursery

Our Story

Noel Keenan was a dairy farmer with a big dream. In the mid-1980s, he set about transforming four acres of grazing farmland into his dream garden alongside the River Nore, near the picturesque village of Castletown. During the years that followed, his vision, sometimes eccentric pioneering spirit and his insatiable passion for plants and gardening turned the land into a creative and inspiring garden packed with an intriguing range of plants.

Today, Gash Gardens offers the visitor sweeping herbaceous borders with an imaginative blend of vibrant and unusual planting along with many fine specimen trees and shrubs. Water is a linking element throughout with still ponds, meandering streams and a riverside walk. The distinguishing feature of the garden is a stone cavern, known as the Moon House, with a gushing cascade tumbling past its circular window into a lily pond. Now managed by Noel’s daughter Mary with her husband Ross, Gash Gardens is a treat for garden lovers, plant enthusiasts, keen photographers or individuals looking for a peaceful and enjoyable day, surrounded by beauty and nature.

The Owners

Mary Keenan and Ross Doyle are both qualified horticulturists. Mary has been gardening and growing plants for over 40 years. Formerly a college lecturer at the National Botanic Gardens in Glasnevin, Dublin, she has had an extensive career in local authority management of public parks and street trees. She is a Past President and former Executive Director of the Tree Council of Ireland and is also a garden writer, lecturer and long-time regular columnist with the Irish Garden Magazine. Now fully engaged in the running and gardening of Gash Gardens, Mary enjoys sharing the story of the garden and her great passion for plants with visitors. Her husband Ross operates their landscaping business in between the ongoing upkeep and development of their garden. They met, somewhat unconventionally, through their shared love of gardening and therein is another story!


Gash Gardens holds occasional events, talks and garden walks throughout the year. We are also keen to work with anyone with an interest in Gash Gardens as a location for an event. We currently do not have any upcoming events scheduled but we invite you to subscribe to our news to be informed of future events.

Our Nursery

Our policy is to produce small numbers of a large range of plants of high quality, including more unusual and rare species. Plants for sale are predominantly herbaceous perennials and a selection of shrubs, trees, old fashioned roses and climbers to compliment.

Ross and Mary are usually on hand to assist in your selection of plants and to provide knowledgeable and down to earth advice and help if needed. Our Nursery is open all year round but as much of our propagation is done in early spring to ensure fresh stock, we carry our widest range of plants from May to September.

Our on-line shop operates as a click and collect service. Because we offer larger size plants, we do not sell plants by mail order. Some plant varieties are only grown in small quantities and are not listed in our on-line shop, so do please visit our nursery for a wider selection of plants.


Gash Gardens & Nursery,
Castletown, Portlaoise.
Co. Laois. R32K068