Address: Irish Seed Savers Association, Capparoe, Scarriff, Co. Clare, Ireland   Phone: +353 61 921866   Email:

Irish Seed Savers' School Tours

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Clay Oven in Scarriff

Why come here?

For the past number of years, we have been working closely with national schools across the country. Our extensive collaboration has ranged from helping and encouraging schools to establish organic heritage school garden to facilitating school in visiting us so that they can participate in our environmental workshops.

Children are like sponges, eager to absorb nature and all the benefits it offers them. Participating in our educational programmes, children acquire an invaluable appreciation for the endless possibilities and opportunities afforded by their natural environment. Activities like sowing heritage seeds, tasting Native Heritage Apples and searching and identifying insects are direct experiences which children take with them and which will stay with them.

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Potato collecting in Scarriff

What you will see/do on the tour

You will see the Organic Seed gardens, Heritage Orchards and Nurseries of the Irish Seed Savers Association and their Native Woodlands.

What you will need to bring

You should bring a notebook and good walking shoes or wellingtons. Please also bring a light raincoat as you will be outside for some of the time.

When to come here

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Anita's Garden in Scarriff

Spring /summer programme - An t-Earrach agus an Samhradh

This is such a beautiful time of year for the schools to come and visit as the whole garden is starting to wake up. There is blossom on the apple trees and the bluebells and wood sorrel are out in the woodland and of course there is the exciting sowing of seed and turning of soil in preparation for the coming harvest.

We at Irish Seed Savers never cease to be amazed at the resulting bounty and each harvest time it is as if we are looking at it through the eyes of a child for the very first time.

Plant hunt

The children will be split into groups and will start in the original part of our site, Anita’s garden. They will find all the trees and plants marked on their worksheet. This activates their senses through as they smell taste and and seet all the gardens have to offer.

Seed sowing

During seed sowing the children will be sowing their own seed into pots and containers which they can take away. They will also learn the proper way to sow a seed and what seeds need in order to grow healthy and thrive.

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Painted Mountain Corn in Scarriff

Minibeast Hunt

Here the children will take a closer look at what lives under our feet and in the soil and in the air with magnifying glasses. The beautiful and interesting insects they find will send shivers of delight through the children. They also begin to learn how important these insects really are.

All insects are returned unharmed to their habitats.

Composting- here we will take a closer look at composting and decomposers with the children being introduced to various composting systems and the natural process that takes place

Autumn /Winter – An Fómhar agus An Geimhreadh

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Polytunnel in Scarriff

Our Autumn /winter workshops begin in September through to December and are based on seasonal activities. For us at Irish Seed Savers Association it is a very busy time of year as this is when we are saving the seeds from the plants and also harvesting lots and lots of tasty apples. This is also what the children will be doing as part of their visit.

Apple Tasting

Children will get to taste a selection of heritage apples and learn that they have a choice of over a 100 Irish varieties compared to what their used to which is approximately a choice of between 5-10 from their local supermarket. They will most certainly go away with their favourite apples taste and name on the tip of their tongue.

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Apple Tree Nursery in Scarriff

Woodland Activities

Children have a natural pull towards trees and here will learn all about our native trees, their importance, their seed identity, how to propagate new trees, seed dispersal and the ogham alphabet.

Facilities Available


Creating new habitats in the school grounds benefits the entire school community.

Habitats can form any size. The most important consideration in their development is that they are left as undisturbed as possible. In doing so, the animals and insects that live and breed there feel it is a safe place and they will return again and again.

Once children understand and see the importance of caring for and creating new habitats they will carry this increased awareness with them throughout their lives.

Here are some habitats you can create in your school garden

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School Garden
  • Native woodland [can be as big or as small as you like]
  • Native hedgerows
  • A pond
  • Raised beds
  • Herb area
  • Wild flower patch
  • Native orchard
  • Soft fruit area
  • Nesting boxes
  • Log pile
  • Window boxes
  • Bat boxes
  • Bird table
  • Wetland area i.e. bog area
  • A no go area [that’s only for insects and wildlife]

Enquiry Form

Opening Times
Tues - Fri 9.30am - 4.30pm
Sat 12pm - 4.30pm
Closed Sun - Mon
Entrance to Organic Seed Gardens, Orchards and Woodlands is free to children & subscribers.

Irish Seed Savers CLG - Registered Charity Number 20045029, CHY 13989
Certified Organic Number IE-ORG-02 | Licence no. 5629 | Terms and Conditions | Privacy Statement | © 2019

This project is supported by the Department of Rural and Community Development and Pobal through the Community Services Programme.

We confirm that our organisation complies with The Governance Code for the Community, Voluntary and Charitable Sector in Ireland.

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