Kathleen is on the shortlist for ‘Super Garden’ win

Kathleen Barrett of Athea

Athea’s Kathleen Barrett is one of just five budding designers in the running to be crowned winner of RTÉ One’s ‘Super Garden’, to be announced on national television this Thursday night at 7.30pm.
Over the last few weeks, viewers have watched competitors – each on a budget of €15,000, which included €5,000 worth of Irish-grown plants, create a show garden for the residents on an identical plot on a new social housing development built by Meath County Council in Kells.
The final will be judged by judges Brian Burke, Monica Alvarez and Garry Graham, and the winner will secure a coveted show garden spot at Bloom, Ireland’s premier garden festival.
Kathleen’s ‘Super Garden’ homeowners are the Majzel family from Poland. They wanted a garden with a social area for chilling out, plus some plants, and they specifically wanted a dedicated area for their eight-year-old son Jacob, who is very active.
She was given two weeks to design, and another three to put it in place, all of which was achieved on target, with a little help from husband Tommy. The results were heavenly.
As a horticulturalist working for Limerick City County Council, Kathleen has a wealth of gardening and landscaping experience to her name. She has worked in the business for many years, during which time she also ran her own small garden centre, but she’s also an accomplished floral artist and has won awards for her floral art and design at Bloom, Chelsea and a world flower show in Jaipur, India.
She commented: “My hopes of winning? Where would it lead me, that’s the question? Would it lead me to a better life, a better job? I’ve never felt recognised, I’ve always felt that I was one step behind everyone else, I’m not over that hill yet (she’s 51). If I do win it would change my life, it’s my time.
“Winning ‘Super Garden’ would bring me out from a small West Limerick village (Athea, host to Fleadh Cheoil Luimnigh this Bank Holiday Weekend) to be known all over the country and recognised as a designer. It would change my life.”
Outside of work, Kathleen spends plenty of time in her pretty garden at Valley View, along with her sprawling animal/equine retirement and beef farm.