As summer (gradually) sets in, you might be looking for some new outdoor places to while away the warm weekends. We have decided to offer you some inspiration by compiling a list of our favourite gardens in the Bristol and Bath area.
First up on our list are the beautifully historic gardens at The Newt in Bruton, just outside of Bath. The estate, previously named Hadspen House, dates back to the 17th century and boasts a variety of cultivated areas including Kitchen, Fragrance and Colour gardens, as well as woodlands, orchards, ponds and lakes. At the heart of it lies a walled parabola concealing a beautifully intricate, Baroque inspired apple tree maze. There are also a selection of garden eateries to tempt your taste buds serving fresh, seasonal fare, sourced from the kitchen gardens and orchards. If you wish to visit, opening hours are 10am – 6pm – adults – £15 and child – £7. Take some sensible shoes as the paths are uneven and can become slippery. Unfortunately dogs are not welcome.
Next up is Prior Park in Bath – a beautiful 18th century landscaped garden offering wonderful views across Bath and the surrounding areas. Follow the winding paths through the wooded valley and you will find concealed architecture from the garden’s Georgian history. At the bottom of the valley, you can walk over the famous Palladian Bridge, one of only four in the world! The garden also leads on to the well known Bath skyline trail so is great if you’re looking for a nice long walk! Opening times – 10am – 4pm. Tickets: Adult – £7.40 Child – £3.70.
The gardens surrounding Hauser & Wirth arts centre and gallery in Somerset have been created by internationally renowned landscape designer Piet Oudolf. The curved shapes and careful planting resonate with classical garden design, however Oudolf’s signature style of wispy, feathered grasses and colourful perennials provides a softness that tempers the traditional formality. The garden is peppered with a variety of changing sculptures by the galleries roster of artists and, along with Oudolf’s spectacular seed heads and Smiljan Radić’s Pavilion , ensures that the garden is a visual dreamscape all year round. Open Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm (March – October) and 10am – 4pm (November – February).
Corsham Court is a privately owned estate nestled in the glorious Wiltshire countryside. It is worth a visit if only to feast your eyes on the gigantic amorphous yew hedges that have taken over the boundary walls. Open daily (excl. Monday and Friday) 2pm – 5.30pm. Garden only tickets – adult -£5, child – £2.50.
A garden and a nursery, Special Plants has the lot and is sure to awaken the inner gardener in us all! Bought in 1996 by passionate plants woman Derry Watkins, the site was originally a derelict barn surrounded by muddy fields, but is now a thriving garden, home and business. The nursery sells a whole host of unusual and interesting plants and is helpfully organised into categories according to the plants needs; ‘plants for damp shade’, ‘plants for dry sun’, ‘tender plants’ etc. Watkins offers a range of gardening courses including ‘creating a border’ and ‘cut flower gardening’, all of which include coffee, homemade lunch and 10% discount on plants from the nursery in the price. For more information on the courses offered just click here. The nursery is open daily between March and October (10am – 5pm) and the garden is open every Tuesday from mid April – October. There is also a talk every Tuesday at 11am on what’s happening in the garden week by week – the talk is included in the price of the garden entrance ticket which is £5.