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The Best English Gardens to Visit this Summer

Here is our pick of the finest to see this season which might just reinvigorate your desire to look after your own patch of this green and pleasant land.
Guides Lifestyle

Kensington Gardens, London

With 265 acres to explore in the heart of our capital, it’s no wonder Kensington Gardens attracts millions each year.

One of eight Royal Parks, entry is completely free and there’s plenty to see during a quick stroll or a full day of fun.

There are formal avenues of trees and ornamental flowerbeds as well as famous highlights such as the Albert Memorial and Peter Pan statue and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground.

Eden Project, Cornwall

Just over 20 years ago, the Eden site was a giant clay pit. Now it’s a world-famous visitor attraction that’s home to the largest rainforest in captivity, stunning plants and contemporary gardens.

Each of the giant biomes, which look like they are made of glass but are actually formed out of plastic to keep the weight down, has something exciting to discover.

There are also activities including England’s longest zip-wire, places to eat and drink and a play garden. You can even stay at an on-site youth hostel, made out of former shipping containers.

Breezy Knees Garden, Near York

Five miles from the popular historic city of York you’ll find these award-winning gardens.

Although on smaller scale to more well-known destinations, there are more than 6,000 varieties of plants to discover, a meadow and pond and shade, rose and cottage gardens.

Breezy Knees is also something of a secret among keen gardeners thanks to an extensive adjoining nursery allows visitors to browse a selection of perennials, all of which can be seen growing in the main garden and including many rare types.

The Alnwick Garden, Northumberland

Described as the world’s most extraordinary contemporary garden, this is place full of surprises and enchantment.

The Grand Cascade is a water feature on an epic scale which forms a dramatic centrepiece and is the first thing that catches the eye on arriving through the archway entrance.

Other features are a cherry orchard, woodland walk and a poison garden brimming with deadly plants, if you dare to enter that is. There’s also a stunning treehouse restaurant and potting shed where cocktails are served.

National Gardens Scheme, locations nationwide

A beautiful garden to visit could be right on your street thanks to the National Gardens Scheme.

Since 1927, the project has seen private gardens big and small across the country opened by their owners to raise money for charity.

Simply search online for open events in your area or look out for details in the press. Many will be taking part in a special festival weekend on June 4 and 5 which is expected to attract thousands of visitors to more than 400 open gardens.

Want to give your garden a makeover?

Have you been inspired to make your garden standout from the crowd? Visit our new collection of Garden Furniture and transform your outdoor space now.

Or visit our online magazine and find tips on How to get your garden ready for summer.


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