The w|ė MAGAZINE April Interview features an incredible creative plantsman and artist T.J. Maher who’s Wicklow garden is a wonder in colour, texture and form. We talked to the talented creative about his garden, why weeds are good and how to choose colour in planting.
Q1. Can you tell us a little how, when and why you started your amazing garden?
Q.2 What is at the heart of your garden?
Q.3 This month’s theme is all about wild garden living- Can you tell us how the idea of garden living has found its way into different areas you’ve created in your incredible garden?
Everything has a role and everything is connected.
If we tolerated all our wild flowers/weeds we wouldn’t need to plant anything for pollinators. Put the spray away.
Q.4. What role do you think gardens play in our mental state and do they impact our happiness?
Q5. Can you describe your gardening approach?
Q6. You are a talented artist- how do you think this informed your approach to planting combinations?
Q7. Your borders are so artful and dreamy….can you give us some advice on how to start with combining colours in the border?
Q8. What advice would you give people who are creating gardens for themselves right now?
Also, ask yourself, ‘What do I want from my garden, what do I want it to be’?. Everyone will have a different answer to that.
Q9. You grow some stunning dahlia specimens – can you give us any advice on growing these incredible plants?
Q10. What are your top three favourite Dahlia varieties and why?
About the Garden:Patthana Garden is an award-winning small village garden set over a third of an acre and is home to T.J. Maher and Simon Kirby. Despite the size of the plot the garden is laid out in a series of different garden spaces which lends interest to the garden and is full of design concepts, ideas and inspiration from both a floral and landscaping perspective. The lower cobbled courtyard with its Potting shed and a sunken mediation room leads to the main courtyard with a small wildlife pond and is bursting with colourful pot displays. Both these areas house an extensive collection of plants from the hardy to the tender and exotic. Circular granite steps sweep up to the upper terrace garden with its borders of herbaceous perennials, annuals and unusual shrubs and trees carefully chosen for a small garden. Patthana Garden is gardened organically and is a sanctuary and haven for wildlife with many plants chosen for their value to wildlife.
Learn with T.J.
T.J. runs the Patthana Garden Course, which offers a unique opportunity to witness Patthana Garden as it changes through the year. On this inspirational nine month course running March to November you will join artist and creator of Patthana Garden T.J. Maher to learn about topics such as how to use colour creatively in the garden, selecting plants for maximum interest and impact, propagation techniques, garden design, creating borders and fabulous pot displays, attracting wildlife, choosing the right plant for the right place, among numerous other topics. Limited places – must be pre-booked
Patthana Garden is open to the public every Sunday from the 1st Sunday in May to 1st Sunday in October from 12 to 5pm. Groups by Appointment at other times.
Address: Kiltegan, Co. Wicklow, W91 X789
Contact: T.J. Maher