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Upcoming Events, Exhibitions and Talks at the Gardens
Last updated: August 26, 2015

The calendar to the right will help you navigate around the many events we have – if you hover your mouse over an orange date it will show you what events are on that day, and a further click will give you the full details.
As well as the full schedule, there are sections to show you details for:


Sculpture in Context, Annual Show
Thursday 3rd September - Friday 16th October

Sculpture in Context is Ireland’s largest outdoor sculpture exhibition, offering an unparalleled opportunity to view Ireland’s well established and most promising future artists showing new work. The sculptures will be displayed throughout the gardens, ponds, Great Palm House and Curvilinear Range, with the smaller works exhibited in the in the gallery in the Visitors Centre. On Saturdays throughout the exhibition, you will have a rare opportunity to join the artists for a guided tour through the exhibits.
Daily outdoors and in the Visitor Centre

Lectures, Tours & Other Events

Budding Botanist - Flower Pressing Workshop
Wednesday 5th August and 19th August

Kids! Get great tips from the experts and you too can be a plant collector. Join us on an expedition through the gardens identifying and collecting suitable plants for pressing before constructing your own flower press and starting your very own dried plant collection.
Time: 2.30pm
Admission Free. Booking essential
Children’s Art Camp
Niamh Synnott
Monday 10th - Friday 14th August

Join artist Niamh Synnott for Children’s art week! Children will be encouraged through fun art activities to observe, engage in and be inspired by their surroundings. Kids can try their hand using a variety of mediums and materials such as mono and block prints, batik, plein-air painting, and construction using art straws.
Ages 4-7 years: 11.00am - 12.30pm
Ages 8-12 years: 2.00pm - 4.00pm
Cost: €50. Booking essential
Children’s Event – Pond dipping

Saturday 22nd August

A fun event exploring the weird and wonderful diversity of insects and mini beasts living in and around the pond at the Botanic Gardens. This workshop is suitable for children age 8 upwards.
Time: 11.00am. Meet at the Visitor Centre
Admission Free. Booking Essential Organised with the Dublin Naturalists’ Field Club
Heritage Week Events

Saturday 22nd - Sunday 30th August

Music in the Gardens - Traditional Irish Music with Mick O’Brien and family.

Sunday 23rd August

Explore your heritage with this family of multi instrumentalists as they play the uilleann pipes, banjo, low whistle, violin and more in a rousing repertoire of traditional Irish music. Mick will also share stories on the history of traditional Irish music and instruments.
Time: 2.30pm in the Gallery of the visitor Centre
Guided Tour: Trees are our Heritage

Sunday 23rd and 30th August

Join us to discover some of the amazing native and nonnative trees growing in the Gardens and find out some interesting facts about trees (from biodiversity to folklore to economic). This walk will be suitable for family groups.
Time: 3.00pm.
Meet at the Visitor Centre
The Viking House & Garden
Monday 24th- Sunday 30th August

The Viking House is open! Come inside and find out what plant materials they used for building, crafts and food, and what they grew in their gardens.
Time: 2.30pm- 4.30pm
Harvest (2015) - Video and artist Q&A
Thursday 27th August

Harvest (2015) was shot in the National Botanic Gardens and follows a character as he attentively records the sound of plants as they are watered during the course of a morning. In the opening section of the film the leaves of a plant are wired with custom built contact microphones, which record the sound of the water in contact with the plants surface. The sound recorded from the surface of the plants is reintegrated into the narrative of the piece and becomes the dominant soundtrack in the final section, effectively allowing the viewer to listen to the sounds as the environment 'experiences' the sensation of the water.
Time: 12 to 4pm
The film will be on a continuous loop in the auditorium
Credits - Camera: Martin Healy; Sound: Karl Burke; Actor: Will Seery; Editing: Martin Healy
Irish Roots - Walking through the Gardens Past
Saturday 29th August

Plant-hunters, botanists, poets, and philosophers have all been associated with the Gardens. Join us for this history-themed tour showcasing the rich heritage that is the National Botanic Gardens.
Time: 3.00pm.
Meet at the Education & Visitor Centre

Lecture – Don't Die in Autumn - A Life of Birds
Eric Dempsey Thursday 10th September

To coincide with the launch of Eric Dempsey’s new book, ‘Don’t Die In Autumn – a memoir’, Eric will present a public talk on his life watching and enjoying Ireland’s rich and varied birdlife. Using original stunning images of Ireland’s birds, Eric will present a relaxed, entertaining and fun evening, bringing everyone on a journey of his discovery of birds at an early age, from spending time in the Botanic Gardens to travelling the world in search of rare and exotic species.
Copies of ‘Don’t Die In Autumn’ will be on sale on the night.
Born and bred in Finglas in north Dublin but now living in Wicklow, Eric is a team member of the popular Mooney Goes Wild show on RTE radio.
Time: 8.00pm in the Visitor Centre
Organised with the Tolka Branch of BirdWatch Ireland
Tolka Nights
Saturday 12 September

Tolka Nights ( is a series of public events happening in September in three distinct sites along the river Tolka. The final evening - at the National Botanic Gardens - will be a symposium of presentations about the Tolka, flooding, and work by other artists in response to similar themes. Following these discussions, the audience will move outdoors for a closing sound event, dispersed within the garden’s unique landscape set along the Tolka.
Time: 6-9 pm.
Please note that this event is free but tickets are required, visit Eventbrite: Symposium and River Amp for tickets.

Events at the National Botanic Gardens, Kilmacurragh

Located in east County Wicklow, the National Botanic Gardens, Kilmacurragh is the centrepiece of an 18th century estate and is today famous for its conifers, rhododendrons and other acid-loving plants.
Kilmacurragh is located about 1 hours drive south of Dublin off the N11. For directions see map below.
Free Guided Tours will be held twice daily from April onwards until the middle of October at 12.00pm and 3.00pm.
Please check the website or locally for seasonally themed guided tours.
Group tours should be pre-booked.
For all events, meet at the car park entrance to the Gardens.
Further information: 0404 48844

Education workshops for schools

Education workshops for schools
  • Join a Get Growing workshop in the Education Garden. Suitable for primary schools.
  • Delve Deeper, discover the microscopic lives of plants with our special hand held microscopes. Suitable for primary and up to Junior Cert science.
  • Sustainability - What’s that? Interactive workshop exploring the principles of sustainability, biodiversity, plant conservation and the importance of plants in our lives. Covering aspects of geography, science and CSPE curriculum. Suitable for second level students.

All education workshops must be booked in advance. For further details please phone 01 857 0909.
Extended programme also available in partnership with the Rediscovery Centre in Ballymun. All education workshops are free of charge but must be booked in
Teachers Training

Summer course for Primary Teachers: 1st - 7th July (excluding weekend). This popular teachers course is returning! Learn all about the outdoor classroom and how best to use the gardens as a teaching resource. Training includes seashore ecology and wild plant identification field trips along with special behind the scenes tours in the National Botanic Gardens. For further details and booking contact:
Guided Tours

Special themed tours of the gardens and the glasshouses. Learn all about the fascinating world of plants! Explore Irelands only tropical rainforest, learn about our native plants, their uses and mythology or find out how plants survive in the desert. Discover the importance of plants and the role they play in our lives through our special themed tours geared specially for kids. Suitable for primary and second level groups.
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