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If there is a garden not listed, or you have additional details of a garden already listed that you think should be included in this North East England regional digest of gardens and arboretums please We will respond quickly and direct you to our Upload Area where you can submit a photo of the garden and descriptive text. Gardens need not be large but should be 'memorable', 'outstanding' or of 'significant importance'. If a garden does not have web site, a brief description would be appreciated.
Belsay Castle (EH) Belsay, Northumberland.
Photo © English Heritage Photo Library
The thirty acres of magnificent landscaped grounds and gardens are Belsay's particular glory. The quarry gardens and the Cragwood Walk are the most special features. Sir Charles Monck, who built the present hall, saw the potential of the stone quarries, and introduced many rare and fine specimens into them to make a garden.
Succeeding generations extended the quarry and added to its planting. They made a green gorge, its sheer walls hung with exotic plants and the floor dotted with ferns. It is an adventure in itself to explore its paths and shady corners. Rhododendrons are among Belsay's great delights; many beautiful examples grow in the quarry, as well as in the terraces at the front of the Hall, with their beds of roses, lilies, lavender and other fragrant and brightly- coloured plants. National Collection of Iris (series spuriae).
Bide a wee Cottage Stanton, Netherwitton, Morpeth, Northumberland.
Set within the picturesque Northumbrian Countryside a most unique quarry garden, featuring unusual perennials, natural rock, stonework, and water. A Wildflower meadow walk with bee hives lies on the edge of the garden.
The garden has been the subject of television programmes Gardeners World being one, featured in the 'Sunday Supplements' and magazines such as the Royal Horticultural Society Journal 'The Garden'. Bide-A-Wee is also the holder of the National Collection of Centaurea.
A nursery featuring unusual perennials and plants produced from the garden and hardy in the harsh Northumbrian climate.
Beningbrough Hall and Gardens (NT) Shipton, York.
Photo © Joanne Parker
The gardens, surrounded by water meadows, comprise an American garden, a Victorian conservatory, box-edged rose gardens, a lily pool and aromatic borders in the newly restored walled garden.
Brodsworth Hall (EH) nr. Doncaster, North Yorkshire.
Photo © English Heritage Photo Library
Brodsworth Hall and gardens have remained virtually untouched since the 1860s. The gardens include formal terraces, a croquet lawn, summerhouse, a romantic quarry garden and a curious 'target house'.
Castle Howard York, North Yorkshire.
Photo © Castle Howard 2009
Magnificent 18th century palace surrounded by extensive landscaped grounds. The walled garden contains over 400 old roses. James Russell started the garden in 1975 and occupies a large square area that has long been devoted to vegetables. The southern half is Lady Cecilia's Garden; the northern half is divided into two roughly square gardens; the Sundial Garden is where you find modern roses. Standard roses are planted among them, adding height and small explosions of colour.
Castle Howard Arboretum Trust York, North Yorkshire.
Photo © Castle Howard Arboretum Trust
The new arboretum at Castle Howard represents one of the most exciting new developments in horticulture and botany for the new millennium. When planting began in 1975, the late Lord Howard and James Russell, VMH, shared a vision to create one of the most comprehensive collections of hardy woody plants in Europe.
Because of the botanical importance of the extensive collections of woody plants held in both the arboretum and in the woodland garden in Ray Wood, a joint charitable trust has been formed between Castle Howard and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, to safeguard the future of the collections.
These remarkable collections, comprising some 6,500 different taxa (identifiably different types of plant) were planted from 1968, when the valuable historic collection formed at the Sunningdale Nursery in Surrey was transported to Ray Wood. This 40-acre area of woodland had been clear-felled and reforested with hardwoods in 1948, but was first surveyed in 1563 and much of the extant ground flora is characteristic of secondary ancient woodland. Ray Wood today boasts a wonderful collection of rhododendrons, some 500 species and 300 important hybrids, along with many other rare shrubs and trees, among them other members of the family Ericaceae, such as Vaccinium and Gaultheria, and considerable collections of genera such as Sorbus, Magnolia, Rosa and Acer.
In the arboretum, a native flora of species-rich grassland, dotted with orchids, king cups and bog bean, nestles beneath exotic trees gathered from around the temperate world, providing a landscape that is unique in both style and substance.
Chesters Walled Garden Chollerford, Hexham.
Photo © Chesters Walled Garden
Chesters Walled Garden is a 2 acre 18th century garden, surrounded on three sides by sheltering woods of beech and yew, and open to the south with views over the lovely Tyne valley. Situated next to Chesters Roman Fort, it is on the line of Hadrian's Wall - the site of a Roman road actually crosses the garden. For over 200 years the fruit and vegetable garden for Chesters house, it is now a unique herb and herbaceous garden. It boasts one of the largest collections of herbs in the country growing ebulliently behind neatly clipped box hedges.
There is a National Collection of Origanum and Thymus, the thyme being grown on the thirty metre long, raised Thyme Bank. There is a small Roman Garden showing the plants the Romans cultivated during their occupation of Britain. Organically run, the garden attracts diverse wildlife; frogs, toads, newts and dragonflies with its two ponds, woodpeckers and many other birds (bird count on display in shop) and even red squirrels. Wildflowers blend in the full borders with rarer perennials, attracting numerous bumble bees as well as being used for their loose, design qualities. The garden is closed to the public.
Constable Burton Hall Gardens nr. Leyburn, North Yorkshire.
Photo © Constable Burton Hall Gardens 2011
The atmosphere of Constable Burton Hall Gardens has evolved over time: from the Elizabethan period, with its more formal concept of sweeping lawns and parterre terraced gardens, to the present day, with its more informal design.
Within the terraced woodland garden, fine trees have matured over many years. These include a large sweeping Cedar of Lebanon, together with a majestic Deodar Cedar. These canopy trees provide welcome shelter for a wide variety of plants including a fine collection of Acer japonica, Acer palmatum and various forms of magnolia, all of which create colour and scent throughout the season. Ground cover plants that will tolerate heavy shade include hostas and ferns, and Rodgersia podophylla with their large chestnut-like leaves which produce creamy white flowers in summer.
The Stream Garden and Lily Pond offer another dimension to the garden, with fine examples of architectural and marginal plants. This is an area where large groups of bog arum, bamboo and Gunnera manicata create an impressive show.
Cragside (NT) Rothbury, Morpeth, Northumberland.
Photo © National Trust
Enter the world of Lord Armstrong - Victorian inventor, innovator and landscape genius. Cragside house was a wonder of its age. It was the first house in the world to be lit by hydro-electricity and is crammed full of ingenious gadgets. The gardens are incredible. One of the largest rock gardens in Europe leads down to the Iron Bridge, which in turn leads accross to the formal garden. Children will love our adventure play area and exploring Nelly's Labyrinth, a networks of paths and tunnels cut out of a vast area of rhododendron forest.
Crook Hall Gardens Durham.
Photo © 2008 Crook Hall
Crook Hall built in the 13th century is one of the oldest inhabited houses in Durham. The Hall is a jumble of buildings reflecting its historical development. A medieval Hall merges into a Jacobean section with an attached Georgian house. The house is surrounded by 6 acres of romantic gardens laid out in a series of rooms such as the Shakespeare Garden, the Cathedral Garden and the Secret Walled Garden. Durham’s bustling market place is a short walk away and many who view the gardens describe it as a ‘peaceful oasis’. A fact that possibly led William Wordsworth and John Ruskin to visit the gardens for quiet contemplation.
Durham University Botanic Garden Durham.
Photo © 2007 Durham University
The gardens contain a Tropical House, Cactus House, Conservatory, Prince Bishops Garden, Woodland Garden, Gazebo Garden, Alpine Garden, New Zealand Collection and an American Arboretum and Tree Trail.
Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal Water Garden (NT) Fountains, Ripon, North Yorkshire
Photo © 2012 National Trust
One of the best surviving examples of a Georgian water garden. Elegant ornamental lakes, canals, temples and cascades provide a succession of dramatic eye-catching vistas. Showy autumn colouring.
The Water Garden, with its formal, geometric design and its extraordinary vistas, was inspired by the work of the great French landscape gardeners but is entirely individual in character. Studley was also influenced by the work of Queen Anne’s gardeners, George London and Henry Wise.
His gardener William Fisher was an employee of the estate, and the garden works were carried out by local labour under the direction of local man John Simpson, who was succeeded in 1728 by the master mason Robert Doe from London.
RHS Garden Harlow Carr (RHS) Crag Lane, Harrogate, North Yorkshire
Photo © The Royal Horticultural Society 2006
One of Yorkshire’s most relaxing yet inspiring locations at the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales.
The stunning 58 acre garden is seeing exciting new developments while retaining its uniquely tranquil and welcoming atmosphere. Dramatic Rose Revolution borders display the clever use of mixed perennials, grasses and roses beautifully whilst combining sustainable practice, inspirational horticulture with a contemporary twist. National Collections of Fuchsia (sect Quelusia), Polypodium and Rheum (culinary).
Also not to be missed are the superb new Main Borders, a gorgeous mix of herbaceous perennials, grasses and shrubs. Gardens through Time takes you through 200 years of gardening history up to a contemporary garden designed by Diarmuid Gavin as featured in the BBC Two series. The inspiring Kitchen Garden, superb Streamside and enticing Scented Garden are also highlights of the garden.
Harlow Carr shows what can be grown in the north, including some surprises and offers interest for all seasons, from woodland to wildflowers and alpines to autumn colour. Events all year include outdoor theatre, festivals, workshops and children’s activities. With an extensive Shop & Plant Centre and the fabulous Bettys Café Tea Rooms offering delicious food and the best teas and coffees, it really is growing to inspire and offers a great day out. Free parking, cafe bar, extensive Plant Centre and the largest gardening bookshop in the north.
Herterton House Hartington, Cambo, Morpeth, Northumberland.
Photo © Alnwick Tourism Association
One acre of formal garden within stone walls around a sixteenth century farmhouse. This small garden is a delight to the eye with excellent colour coordination and some unusual species. Also a small topiary and a physic garden.
Hollies Botanical Garden Leeds, Yorkshire.
Leeds botanical garden, the home of 4 National Council Collections for the conservation of plants and gardens.
Houghall Gardens Durham.
Set in 25 acres the gardens at Durham Houghall College presents a range of gardening styles with an arboretum containing some rare tree varieties as well as the National Collection of Sorbus (sect Aria & Micromeles). Large heather bed, alpine house, water garden, naturalised narcissus plantings. Large arboretum with fully labelled plantings. Orchid House (entry by arrangement.)
Howick Hall Gardens Alnwick, Northumberland.
Photo © Howick Hall 2012
The gardens at Howick are primarily the work of Charles, 5th Earl Grey, his wife Mabel, and their daughter Lady Mary Howick between 1920 and 2001. They established and maintained an informal and natural style of gardening first advocated by William Robinson in the late 19th Century, which completely replaced the more formal Victorian planting of their ancestors. All that is left of the old garden are some of the mature trees; all else was swept away. Lovely flower and shrub gardens. In the spring and early summer the Woodland Garden is particularly lovely with rhododendrons, camellias and magnolias. Extensive grounds including formal gardens around house.
A new Arboretum opened on 1st April 2006, with a formal opening by Roy Lancaster on 29th April. It covers about 65 acres at the moment and virtually all of it has been grown from seed collected in the wild since 1985. There are about 11,000 trees and shrubs from about 1,800 taxa planted in six geographical groups.
Kirkley Hall Ponteland, Northumberland.
Photo © Crown copyright 1995 - 2005
A horticultural training college with interesting ornamental borders, sunken garden and alpines. National Collection of Fagus.
Wall-trained fruit trees and greenhouse plants.
Land Farm Garden Colden, Hebden Bridge, Yorkshire.
Photo © Information Britain
The Garden is 1,000 feet up on a north facing slope. Has featured on "Gardener's World". Entirely created from a green field site having first planted 6,000 trees for shelter. Parties are welcome on evenings. Cost per person £5.00, but includes refreshments.
Longframlington Gardens Longframlington, Morpeth, Northumberland.
Photo © Longframlington Gardens
Gardens and arburetum, designed by Hazel Huddleston, covering almost 12 acres of land. These interesting, newly made gardens are planted with thousands of plants, chosen to provide interest and colour throughout the whole year.
Mount Grace Priory (EH) Staddle Bridge, Northallerton, North Yorkshire.
Photo © 2007 NTPL / C. P. Robinson
Mount Grace Priory, Britain's last preserved Carthusian monastery, is nestled amongst attractive woodlands. The extensive gardens include a herb garden, a delightful fish pond and a monk's cell. There is also a nature trail.
Newby Hall Gardens Ripon, North Yorkshire.
Photo © 2007 Newby Hall & Gardens Estate Office
The gardens at Newby Hall extend over 40 acres and were established in the 1920s and are full of rare and interesting plants. They include a 19th century statue walk and a woodland discovery walk. National Collection of cornus (excl florida cvs). See also the Sisley Tours web site.
Parcevall Hall Gardens Skyreholme, Skipton, North Yorkshire.
Photo © 2010 Parcevall Gardens
The first mention of Parcevall Hall is in the will of Peter Yorke in 1589. The gardens, as they exist today, were created by Sir William Milner in a project which started in 1927 and took thirty men three years to complete. Sir William enjoyed the advice of some of the best amateur gardeners of the time and planted many types of rhododendrons and shrubs and plants from Western China and Tibet.
There is a wood, a cliff garden, an orchard and a wonderful semi-natural rock garden through which a stream flows on its way to feed the ponds and water features of the more formal areas and terraces fronting the hall. The very pure water supply is from an old mine level in the hills closeby. The pools grow Charophytes, higher algaes only growing in the purest spring water. The terraces and long red borders are laid out on the form of the Cross as Sir William was a deeply religioius man. He left the property to the Walsingham Shrine who let it to Bradford Diocese to run as a Retreat House. Parcevall Hall gardens have evolved to be in harmony with the surrounding fells and are utterly quiet and peaceful.
Raby Castle Staindrop, Darlington, Co. Durham.
Photo © Raby Estates
The Gardens have been considerably altered during this century, particularly since 1980, but many of the original features remain. In particular, there are the two fine old yew hedges, and the ornamental pond, originally constructed to provide water for the Kitchen Garden.
There is a new conservatory whose front replicates the 19th century original, rose gardens; formal lawns; and the informal heather and conifer garden. The East Garden contains the main herbaceous border, designed by the Dowager Lady Barnard, with species of trees within the lawn, such as the Tulip tree (Liriodendron tulipafera) and the Wedding Day Rose whose petals transforms through three colour changes.
The Ranch House 60 Clara Drive, Calverley, nr Leeds.
Photo © NGS 1999-2008
A 2 acre garden created in 1998 by owner. Series of interconnecting areas separated by yew hedges are linked by grass paths. Rose and clematis arches provide a succession of harmonious plantings to the numerous herbaceous and mixed borders. Ponds; woodland garden has evolving underplanting beneath mature trees with shrubs and woodlanders creating a naturalistic atmosphere. Efficient composting system.
Opening Dates & Times: Home-made teas. Visitors welcome by appt May to Aug, groups of 10+, coaches permitted.
Contact: Preston Harrison Tel: 0113 257 0114
Directions: 8m NW of Leeds. From A6120 ring road, take A657 through Calverley. Turn right just before petrol stn. House ½m on right.
Scampston Walled Garden Malton, North Yorkshire.
Photo © Scampston Estate 2012
A contemporary plantsman’s garden set within the historic walls of the kitchen garden of Scampston Hall. Designed by Piet Oudolf in 9 different ‘garden rooms’; each with its own atmosphere, and separatedby neatly clipped beech hedges. A 400m border walk contains many unusual spring and autumn flowering shrubs including several Paeonia rockii. In other areas, colourful perennial meadow planting contrasts with a peaceful silent garden with its reflective pool and clipped yew pillars and two-tone ‘waves of grass’ containing close mown lawn and Molinia caerulea ‘Poul Petersen’ grass.
The cascade circuit walk takes in the traditional gardens around the Hall includes a 19th century Rock Garden, a Woodland Garden and 'Capability' Brown lakes and parkland.
Sheffield Botanical Gardens Sheffield, Yorkshire.
Photo © 2007 Sheffield Botanical Gardens Trust
Extensive 19 acre garden with over 5,500 species of plants, including disabled persons garden. Gardens are Grade II Listed by English Heritage as a garden of special architectural and historical interest. Grounds landscaped in the gardens que style by Robert Marnock, a famous 19th century landscape designer. The Gardens have recently been fully restored. National Collection of Diervilla and Weigela.
Studley Royal Water Garden - see Fountains Abbey.
Wallington (NT) Cambo, Morpeth, Northumberland.
Photo © 2007 NTPL / Matthew Antrobus
An enchanting terraced walled garden with themed mixed borders and splendid conservatory. National Collection of Sambucus.
Thorp Perrow Arboretum Bedale, North Yorkshire.
Photo © 2008 Thorp Perrow Arboretum
Thorp Perrow Arboretum, Woodland Garden and Falconry Centre. The arboretum has 85 acres of woodland walks. It is one of the largest and rarest collections of trees and shrubs in the north of England and holds five National Collections - Ash, Lime, Walnut, Laburnum and Cotinus. Thorp Perrow has something to offer all year round. Thousands of naturalized daffodils in spring, followed with blossom, carpets of bluebells and bold drifts of wild flowers. Later in the year the autumn foliage provides dramatic effects and stunning colours. The Falconry Centre of Thorp Perrow is a captive breeding and conservation centre that gives you the opportunity to learn more about birds of prey.
Wentworth Castle Lowe Lane, Stainborough, Barnsley, Yorkshire.
Photo © 2007 Wentworth Castle Trust 2007
One of the most important historic gardens in the North of England, this hidden gem from the 18th century opened fully for the first time on a daily basis in May 2007, 10am-5pm. Wentworth Castle, a grade I listed building, is the home of Northern College for Residential Adult Education. The gardens and 500 acre landscape surrounding it are, historically, among the most important in the country, having been designated grade I on English Heritages's Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest. They contain rare surviving features, such as the serpentine watercourse and formal wilderness garden, as well as the structures amongst the first of their kind to have been constructed in a garden, such as the mock castle.
The Gardens were laid out in the 18th century by Sir Thomas Wentworth (1672-1739), 1st Earl of Strafford (second creation) and his son William, 2nd Earl (1722-1791), initially as a result of a bitter feud with another branch of the Wentworth Family.
Thomas was suceeded by his son William in 1739, by which time the fashion was moving towards laying out gardens in a more natural style. During the 19th century many exotic trees and shrubs, especially hardy hybrid rhododendrons, were planted and a conservatory and rockery built. In the mid 20th century the gardens fell into neglect until clearance work in the 1970s and part restoration of Stainborough Castle in the 1980s and the establishment of the first of the three National Plant Collections in the Gardens. As there are important contributions from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, the restoration philosophy is to restore the best remaining elements from each period.
The gardens care for 3 National Plant Collections, comprising of species rhododendrons, species magnolias and williamsii hybrid camellias, and also contain an important collection of hardy hybrid rhododendrons, which produce spectacular colour in late May and early June.
York Gate Adel, Leeds, Yorkshire.
Photo © Perennial
York Gate is a fabulous garden owned and managed by Perennial (formerly the Gardeners' Royal Benevolent Society). A one acre plantsman's garden it is divided into fourteen individual 'rooms' each with unique architectural features. What makes this garden exceptional is the exquisite detail to be found within each: the pavement maze in the driveway, the espaliered cedar in the pinetum, the meticulous arrangement of stone setts and gravel along the path in the canal garden.
Another distinguishing feature is the skill with which these rooms are united into a coherent whole. This is achieved using a continuous succession of vistas, each culminating in a focal point - perfectly placed and immaculately proportioned - be it a potting shed window, an eight foot high sundial or an old water pump.
Open from Easter until the end of September, every Thursday, Sunday & Bank Holiday Monday 2-5pm. Also a few selected evenings. Private visits are also welcome. Please telephone (0)113 2678240. This garden is highly recommended!
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