On May 5, 2011, An Post issued two stamps for the annual Europa series.
The common subject chosen by PostEurop (European Post Offices) for 2011 was forests, with each country designing stamps to match this topic. For Ireland, two outstanding examples were chosen.
One stamp shows a little girl sitting under the Tulip Tree, at Knockabbey Castle and Gardens, Co Louth. These gardens date back to 1730 and in just over a decade they have been wonderfully restored to their former glory. The other stamp shows a young boy crossing the River Walk on the Avondale estate in Co. Wicklow. The estate has just over 200 hectares of forest, while the house now fully restored, was once the home of Charles Stewart Parnell.
The featured locations represent the diversity and beautiful landscapes of Irish forests, their relevance as an amenity and recreation resource and their importance for tourism. Ireland's forests are managed by Coillte, the Irish Forestry Board, whose purpose is to enrich lives locally, nationally and globally through the innovative and sustainable management of natural resources. Only 100 years ago Ireland's forest cover had diminished to 1% of the national land area. Through a concerted effort since then the national forest resource has been rebuilt to about 9% of the land area of the State.