Two of Leinster’s most beloved shopping experiences combine as The Orchard pop-up shop opens at Arnotts. We caught up with founder Gerry Dooley on how this prized garden centre got started, what flora to set for summer, the best picnic spots to discover our native botanicals and how to set up your own outdoor space in time for the long stretch in the evening.

A wildlife devotee from a young age Gerry Dooley got his start studying Horticulture at The National Botanical Gardens in Glasnevin and later working with the Dublin Parks Department. Gerry explains how the first seeds of The Orchard were planted, “I discovered a Victorian walled garden in Celbridge which was neglected and needed a new life. I got my hands on it in 1983 where I set up Orchard Nurseries. The business evolved from there over the years with passion and vision.”

Gerry Dooley, founder of The Orchard

"A rnotts is one of the iconic stores we all know and love. We are so honoured to have been asked to represent the new outdoor living concession at Arnotts and we look forward to presenting our 2021 outdoor living collection both online later this month and when the store opens back up safely.” - Gerry Dooley, founder of The Orchard.

Contemporary Antiquity


If you are harbouring ambitions to get your hands dirty this spring than according to Gerry “now is the time.” Gerry advises budding gardeners to “set magnolias, wisteria and rhododendrons this May and if you want to give a vegetable patch a go choose potatoes, tomatoes, onions and salads leaves. These will all take well in the next few weeks in prepared ground, containers and raised beds.”


Who better to ask where to rediscover the wonders of our unique island's horticulture than Gerry. He maintains the best spots to find something different and set up a picnic are “the Botanical Gardens if you are in Dublin but most of all The Burren, Co. Clare. There is something extraordinary about this wild landscape, rare flora and fauna and clean air.”

Vanilla | 28
Cosiscoop Gas Lantern Original, €110.


Take heed of this gardening guru's tips on creating the perfect barbeque area in your outdoor space. Gerry begins “firstly, purchase a quality brand and secondly, choose the model and size to cater for the numbers you intend to cook for. It’s important to position the outdoor cooking experience in a sheltered part of the garden ideally close to a patio area.”

Monterey Hanging Cocoon, €795.


Seize springs longer days and invest in your own private outdoor pizza parlour for fun mid-week meals for the whole family or the perfect party area when we can all entertain again. Gerry recommends thinking “of your outdoor space as an extra room for you and friends to enjoy all year round. Invest in quality garden furniture, a pizza oven and a heater that will stand the test of time.” Gerry adds “it’s always a good idea to soften things with textural fabrics and natural lighting. Accessorise with cushions, throws and lanterns with candlelight to create a warm cosy atmosphere when the sun goes down.”

Soho Corner Set, €5195.

Reclaim your outdoor space and rediscover zen with a room for contemplation, entertaining and connecting with nature, the ultimate garden goals this summer. Follow the link to discover the seasonal offering from The Orchard and start your journey to garden heaven.