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Irish Timber Growers Association Field Day

Field Day to John F Kennedy Park and Arboretum

This day is free for ITGA members. Non members wishing to attend should contact the ITGA in advance at

Meeting point John F Kennedy Park and Arboretum Car Park

This event will accrue 30 CPD points

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JFK Park and Arboretum is a plant collection of international standing. It covers 252 hectares (623 acres) on the southern slopes and summit of Slieve Coillte. It contains 4,500 types of trees and shrubs from all temperate regions of the world, planted in botanical sequence. There are 200 forest plots grouped by continent. Special features include an Ericaceous Garden, (with 500 different rhododendrons, and many varieties of azaleas and heathers), dwarf conifers, hedges, ground covers and climbing plants. The lake is the most popular part of the Arboretum, and is a haven for waterfowl. A road provides access to the summit at 271m from which there are panoramic views. A Visitor Centre houses exhibitions and an audio visual show. The morning visit will outline the history of the Arboretum and the scientific basis for its layout along with a brief outline of our future development plans. We will then hear about the work of preserving red squirrels in the park from Ken Foley on our way to visiting the provenance plots (Sitka, Thuja plicata and Elm), followed by the North American forest plots.

In the afternoon we will visit the Australian, Asian and European plots grown on the flanks of Slieve Coillte.

The field day will be led by Dr Matthew Jebb, Director of the National Botanic Gardens