President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, is set to visit Offaly this week as he launches the 'Giants Grove' project, the largest grove of giant redwood trees in the world outside of California. According to the President's official diary, he will plant a tree within the grounds of Birr Castle and Gardens to officially launch the project.
The ambitious undertaking to create the largest plantation of redwood trees outside of their native California is being run at Birr Castle in association with 'Crann - Trees for Ireland.' Birr Castle and Gardens are honoured to host the President, who will be greeted by residents, Lord and Lady Rosse, as well as the chairperson of Crann, Mark Wilkinson, and the Director of Crann, Diarmuid McAree. The President will also meet pupils from the local Gaelscoil na Laochra in Birr who have been preparing the tree seedlings for the event.
On Friday, April 21, President Higgins will plant a tree and witness a short ceremony accompanied by music, followed by a reception at the Pavillion.
The project itself will see each tree planted in the name of a member of the Irish diaspora - Irish people living abroad, as well as people living here now.
Sponsorship of a tree in the historic grove will start at a price of €500, a fee which will go toward the upkeep of the trees, and sponsors will receive GPS co-ordinates to the site of their individual tree. Names of sponsors will also be placed in a book of honour at Birr Castle.
President Higgins is officially slated to plant the tree at 12:30pm this Friday, April 21.
For more information about the Giants Grove project at Birr, you can click here.
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