Thursday, 28 April 2016

Galloping Gardener Walks © - Spectacular bluebell displays near London this Bank Holiday weekend - and some are dog friendly


There's nothing quite like glimpsing bluebells as you drive through the countryside and catch sight of a sea of cobalt colour in woodlands beside the road, but there are also many spectacular gardens to enjoy this weekend where you can enjoy bluebells and blossoms to your heart's content. Hole Park in Kent (above) has one of the best displays on offer, with wonderful woodland walks for adults and children. Open every day until 11th June daily (11.00-17.00) and then on Wednesdays and Thursdays until 31st October.
Bluebells at Ramster in Surrey
Ramster (above) near Chiddingfold in Surrey, has stunning spring colour displays and is famous for its azaleas and rhododendrons; you'll also be treated to spectacular bluebell displays. Opening hours are 10.00-17.00 daily until 12 June. **Dogs on leads are welcome. And if you're visiting Ramster, you may want to make the extra effort to go to Vann, which is very close by and open on Bank Holiday Monday (2 May, 14.00-18.00) and then daily from 3 May - 8 May, 10.00-18.00). 
High Beeches in West Sussex is another fine bluebell location
In Sussex, you've got High Beeches garden - another favourite of mine - and easily accessible from London. Open every afternoon (13.00- 17.00 pm) except Wednesday, you've got 27 acres to explore and fine displays of bluebells, azaleas, camellias and magnolias, as well as all the rhododendrons beginning to come into bloom. A great garden to go with the kids, because there's so much space for them to run around in! But only guide and assistance dogs permitted here.
Riverhill House has one of the finest bluebell woods in the country
And then of course, there's the famous Arlington Bluebell Walk in East Sussex - open this year for the 39th time and offering a walk through one of the most glorious Bluebell Oceans you're likely to find anywhere in the country! And close enough to Riverhill Himalayan Garden to combine the two in a day if you want a glut of bluebells. Open every day from 10.00 to 17.00 until 8 May.
An enormous amount of work has gone on at Riverhill Himalayan Garden since I last visited and this year sees another of the best bluebell displays in the country. But there's plenty else to see beside bluebells, you could easily spend half a day here admiring what's in bloom. Open Sunday to Wednesday inclusive 10.30-17.00 plus Bank Holidays. **Dogs on leads are welcome. 

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

The Galloping Gardener © Recommends Best British Gardens - A Directory



The following is a list of gardens in the UK and Europe that I've visited personally since I started this blog in 2009. It's growing all the time as I continue to visit more gardens. The list is by no means exhaustive and I've visited many gardens that are not included - why? If a garden doesn't make the grade for me, I don't write about it! Or alternatively, I may have visited and not yet had time to review, so do check back regularly for all the latest additions.

Thank you for all your visits so far and I hope you'll continue to drop by as my list of gardens grows. Click on the link and it will take you to the garden review. Happy garden visiting!

ENGLAND
Arley Hall, Cheshire
Abbey House, Wiltshire
Alfriston Clergy House, East Sussex
Apple Court, Hampshire
Arley Hall, Cheshire
Arundel Castle Gardens, West Sussex
Ascott, Buckinghamshire
Asthall Manor, Oxon
Athelhampton House, Dorset


Barnsley House, Gloucestershire
Barnsley House, Gloucestershire

Barrington Court, Somerset
Bateman's, East Sussex
Beth Chatto Gardens, Essex
Biddulph Grange, Staffordshire
Bonython Garden, Cornwall
Borde Hill, West Sussex
Bourton House, Gloucestershire
Bowood House, Wiltshire
Bramdean House, Hampshire
*Open for NGS and by appt                        

Brandy Mount House, Hampshire
Bressingham Gardens, Norfolk
*Open for NGS and by appt 
Bressingham Gardens, Norfolk                   
Brook Cottage, Oxon
Brook Farm, Worcestershire
Broughton Grange, Oxon
Bury Court, Hampshire
Buscot Park, Oxon

Caerhays Castle, Cornwall
Castle Drogo, Devon


Carwinion, Cornwall
Cerney House, Gloucestershire
Charts Edge, Kent
Chartwell, Kent
Charleston, East Sussex
Cothay Manor, Somerset
Chelsea Physic Garden, London

Chenies Manor House, Buckinghamshire
Cherkley Court, Surrey
**Check website for details
Chiffchaffs, Dorset
Claydon House, Buckinghamshire
Cliveden, Buckinghamshire
Coleton Fishacre, Devon
Colesbourne Park, Gloucestershire
Coton Manor, Northants
Cothay Manor, Somerset
Coughton Court, Warwickshire
Denmans, West Sussex
Cranborne Manor, Dorset
Crossing House, Cambridgeshire

Denmans Garden, West Sussex
Docton Mill, Devon
Docwra's Manor, Cambridgeshire
Doddington Place, Kent
Dorothy Clive Garden, Staffordshire
Driftwood, East Sussex
Dunsborough Park, Surrey

East Lambrook Manor, Somerset
East Ruston Old Vicarage, Norfolk
Easton Walled Gardens, Lincolnshire
Ecclesden Manor, West Sussex

Great Dixter, East Sussex
Eden Project, Cornwall
Englefield House, Berkshire

Exotic Garden, Norfolk
Exbury, Hampshire

Forde Abbey, Dorset
Furzey Gardens, Hampshire

Gibberd Garden, Essex
Gilbert White's House, Hampshire
Gipsy House, Buckinghamshire
(Roald Dahl's garden - open for NGS)
Glen Chantry, Essex
The Garden House, Devon

Glendurgan, Cornwall
Godinton House, Kent
Godolphin, Cornwall
Goodnestone Park, Kent
Gravetye Manor, West Sussex
Great Comp, Kent
Great Dixter, East Sussex
Great Fosters, Surrey
Green Island Gardens, Essex
Gresgarth Hall, Lancashire
Greys Court, Oxon
Groombridge Place, Kent


Hampton Court, Herefordshire
Hannah Peschar Sculpture Garden, Surrey
Hever Castle, Kent
Heale House, Wiltshire
Helmingham Hall, Suffolk
Herstmonceux Castle, East Sussex
Hergest Croft, Herefordshire
Herterton House, Northumberland
Hestercombe Gardens, Somerset
Hidcote Manor, Gloucestershire
High Beeches, West Sussex
Highdown Gardens, West Sussex
Hole Park, Kent
Houghton Lodge, Wiltshire


The Laskett - Herefordshire
Sir Roy Strong's garden
How Caple Court, Herefordshire

Kelmscott Manor, Gloucestershire 
(William Morris' country home)
Kew (Royal Botanical) Gardens, London
Kiftsgate Court, Gloucestershire
King John's Lodge, East Sussex
Knole Park, Kent


Lake House, Hampshire
Lamorran House, Cornwall                          
Larmer Tree Gardens, Wiltshire
Leonardslee Gardens, West Sussex
Hestercombe Gardens, Somerset
(** Sold 2010)
Levens Hall, Cumbria
Little Malvern Court, Worcestershire
Lamorran House, Cornwall
Little Wantley, West Sussex
*NGS and by appointment
London Wetland Centre
Longstock Park, Wiltshire
*Limited opening - check website
Loseley Park, Surrey
Lowther Castle, Cumbria
Lullingstone Castle, Kent                           
*See The World Garden (below)
Lytes Cary Manor, Somerset


Manor House, Upton Grey, Hants
The maze at Hampton Court, Herefordshire
Mapperton House, Dorset
Marks Hall Arboretum, Essex
Manor House, Upton Grey, Hants
Mapperton House, Dorset
Marks Hall Arboretum, Essex
Michelham Priory, East Sussex
Midney Gardens, Somerset
Mill Dene, Gloucestershire
Millgate House, Yorkshire
Misarden Park, Gloucestershire


Parham House, West Sussex
Monks House, East Sussex

Moors Meadow, Herefordshire
Mottistone Manor, Isle of Wight
Pashley Manor, East Sussex
Parham House, West Sussex
Rodmarton Manor, Gloucestershire
Pensthorpe, Norfolk
**Piet Oudolf's Millenium Garden
Polesden Lacey, Surrey
Prospect Cottage, Kent

Ramster, Surrey
Restoration House, Kent
Riverhill House, Kent
Rodmarton Manor, Gloucestershire
Roof Gardens, London
Rousham House, Oxon

Saling Hall, Essex
Sandgate Close, Sussex
Stourhead, Wiltshire
Sandringham, Norfolk
Sarah Raven's Cutting Garden, Sussex
Savill Garden, Surrey
Scotney Castle, Kent
Snowshill Manor, Gloucestershire
Spencers, Essex
Spinners Garden, Hampshire
Tremenheere, Cornwall
St Mary's House and Garden, West Sussex
Stoneacre, Kent
Stone House Cottage, Worcestershire
Stone House, Gloucestershire                
*Open by appt - check website
Stourhead, Wiltshire
Sudeley Castle, Gloucestershire
Sussex Prairies, West Sussex
Swiss Garden, Bedfordshire


The Courts, Wiltshire
The Laskett, Herefordshire
The Salutation, Kent
Wollerton Old Hall, Shropshire
Tintinhull, Somerset
Titsey Place, Surrey
Toddington Manor, Bedfordshire
Town Place, West Sussex (NGS)
Trebah, Cornwall
Tremenheere, Cornwall
Trengwainton, Cornwall
Tylney Hall, Hampshire

Upton Wold, Gloucestershire

Vann, Surrey
Valley Gardens, Surrey
Ventnor Botanic Garden, Isle of Wight

Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire         
Garden of Cosmic Speculation designed
by Charles Jencks and open just one day a year
Wakehurst Place, West Sussex
Waterperry Gardens, Oxon
West Dean Gardens, West Sussex
Woolbeding Gardens, West Sussex
Wyken Hall, Suffolk

York Gate, Leeds, Yorkshire


SCOTLAND
Dunrobin Castle Gardens, Scotland

An Cala
Torosay Castle

Powis Castle, Wales
WALES

Aberglasney
Bodnant
Le Manoir d'Eryignac, France

Ambrass Schlosspark, Austria                       
Chateau de Chaumont International
Garden Festival, Loire Valley, France
Chateau le Boutemont, Normandy, France
Chateau Marqueyssac, Dordogne, France
Gourdon, France
Hortus Botanicus, Amsterdam, Holland
Jardines de Alfabia, Mallorca, Spain
Keukenhof, Holland
La Bambouseraie, Languedoc, France
Le Bois de Moutiers, Normandy, France
Le Manoir d'Eryignac, Dordogne, France
Les Jardins Agapanthe, Normandy, France
Les Jardins des Sericourt, Picardy, France
Serre de la Madone, Menton, France
Val Rahmeh, Menton, France
Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild, Cap Ferrat, 
France
Villandry, Indre-et-Loire, France