The arrival of spring means it’s officially time to get back out in your garden. It might seems like it’s been a long time coming, but the frost has gone and the warmer weather is here (well, sometimes!). Here’s our top public gardens to visit in spring to get you inspired for your own!
Image credit: heligan.com
The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Cornwall
The Lost Gardens of Heligan are found near Mevagissey, in Cornwall and were recently awarded the Garden of the Year by Countryfile. The 200 acre gardens are well known for their sculptures called the Giant’s Head, Mud Maid and Grey Lady. They even have an outdoor jungle garden with sub-tropical plants such Wollemi Pines and a banana plant and Europe’s last remaining pineapple pit. These types of exotic plants were originally brought over by the Victorians, and are able to grow in Cornwall as it’s generally a frost-free climate. The garden dates back to the 16th century, but was lost in undergrowth up until its restoration in 1992. There’s plenty to see at the Lost Gardens of Heligan,they claim it would take a couple of days to see everything in its entirety.
Image credit: Karen Roe
Furzey Gardens, New Forest
Furzey Gardens has its own secret feature; it’s the home of fairies! Scattered throughout the gardens, there are a 30 hidden fairy doors waiting to be found, which makes it a great place to visit for both children and adults. All of the doors are carved by master thatcher Simon Sinkinson. Furzey Gardens is also run as a social enterprise, supporting people with learning disabilities and has around 30 people with learning disabilities work on maintaining the gardens. In 2012, they won a Gold Medal at the Chelsea Flower Show for one of their garden designs, which was re-planted at Furzey Gardens so you can view an award-winning garden yourself!
Image credit: Henry Hemming
Pashley Manor, East Sussex
Pashley Manor is most well-known for its annual tulip festival, which takes place this year from the 24th April to the 8th May. The gardens become a sea of colour, with visitors getting the chance to see over 40,000 tulips. It’s certainly Instagramable! Each section of the garden has a themed colour, made up of 112 varieties of tulips. As well as tulips, another highlight of Pashley Manor is its woodland area which becomes a Bluebell Walk in the springtime.
Image credit: Derek Voller
The gardens at Cragside, in Northumberland were voted by the public as Britain’s Best Garden by Landlove magazine in 2016. There’s three different aspects to the gardens which make it stand out as a great garden to visit spring; its rock garden, collection of pine trees and formal garden. Orchard House in the Formal Gardens has just gone through an 8 month restoration project, which opened this February. In the Pinetum, you can find the tallest Scots pine in the UK, which stands at over 130ft, the equivalent of ten double-decker buses. There’s also a giant sculpture named Douglas which was sculpted out of a diseased fir tree.
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