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  • Aspects: South Dublin

Keep It Country

Now let's look at farming, which is one of South Dublin's best-kept secrets.

Over 50% of South Dublin's 22,301 hectares is considered rural. However, less than 5% of the population lives in these areas. This is because a very large portion of this rural land is mountainous and unsuitable for large-scale habitation.

Until the 1970s, a large amount of the land of South County Dublin was used for agricultural purposes. However, the 1970s and 1980s brought the need for new housing as Dublin began to grow. Therefore, areas like Tallaght, Clondalkin and Crumlin were transformed from green farming areas to heavily built-up housing estates.

Nevertheless, South Dublin still retains some rural areas. Most of the rural population is centred around Rathcoole, with a population of 3,200, and Saggart, with a population of 588. Smaller populations are clustered around Newcastle and Brittas.

The hilly areas of Bohernabreena and Ballinascorney are also home to some farmland, but are more sparsely populated. It is possible to reach open countryside in thirty minutes from Dublin City Centre.

Mountain Grazing

Visually, South Dublin is dominated by the hills to the southeast. On the highest parts of the hills, trees are the main crop and sheep are the main livestock, with increasing milk and cattle production towards the lower ground.

Coniferous Forest
South Dublin Libraries.

Traditionally, cattle are kept on the higher ground in summertime. On the flatter land to the north and west of the county, grain is grown.

Cattle in South Co. Dublin
South Dublin Libraries.

One of the biggest farms was at Corkagh Estate in Clondalkin. Here we will take a look at this farm.