"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Thursday, 6 June 2019

Packwood House Gardens

On Monday afternoon I went along to have a look round the gardens at Packwood House.

I went into the Kitchen Garden first which contains a mixture of vegetables, fruits and flowers. Work began in 2009 to create this garden based on an 18th century plan of the vegetable garden which shows it was divided into quarters with a central feature - possibly a dipping pond.

The wild flower meadows contain many native wild flowers many of which would have been known by Edith Holden (The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady) as she walked and cycled around this area of Warwickshire in the early 1900's.

There has been a garden at Packwood for over 350 years. In the mid 17th century John Fetherston created what was a modern garden at that time. To the south of the house he planted a fruit orchard with 30 paired bee boles (this area is now the famous Yew Garden). He created a walled garden (the Carolean Garden) with brick gazebos - one containing a fireplace and flue system to heat the adjacent wall. The box hedges he created remain to this day. In Victorian times the garden became more informal with flower beds and a rose garden. In the early 20th century Graham Baron Ash extended the house and remodelled the garden making it more formal. When the National Trust took over the house and garden - the garden was mainly laid to lawn. The paths and borders seen today were created in 2004 after the gardeners saw a book by landscape architect Geoffrey Jellicoe who had visited Packwood in the 1920's and taken many photos. A two year project took place to recreate this layout.

The Carolean Garden surrounded by a 17th century red brick wall.

The sunken garden which contains drought tolerant plants including bulbs, annuals, perennials and succulents from around the world.

The Raised Walk which is my favourite part of the garden. I will try and go back early next month when it will look even more stunning.

It was created in the 18th century and is 40 metres long. Borders on each side used the "mingled" style with "hot" colours and there are about 100 different varieties of plant.

The Yew Garden

There were very few butterflies about but there were loads of bumble bees - White-tailed, Buff-tailed, Red-tailed and Common Carder plus many honey bees.

I resisted the temptation of cake and treated myself to a Cardoon plant instead which hopefully the bees will love :)

I did have a quick look round the house this time but I will write about that in a separate post.

All photos taken by me with the Panasonic Lumix FZ330 bridge camera

Reference: Packwood House - A Potter Round the Garden


David M. Gascoigne, said...

I think I see a bee "house" in there - very encouraging.

The Quacks of Life said...

hello Timothy

I do like the garden at Packwood! thanks for the reminder!

Ragged Robin said...

David M Gascoigne - Thank you and yes it is a bee house. So many flowers there that the bees just love :)

The Quacks of Life - Thanks :) We enjoyed meeting you and Quacks and friends so much last year. So pleased we reminded you of the lovely gardens there and hope you can visit them again soon. Timothy :)

Rustic Pumpkin said...

It's so lovely seeing all the beautiful flowers at this time of year, and I am looking forward to when you return later to see how the borders look then. It's such a shame it's so cold that dear Timothy {waving} is still all bundled up in his super colourful sweater.

Ragged Robin said...

Rustic Pumpkin - Thank you. It is such a lovely time of year and the gardens at Packwood are rather lovely. Poor old Timothy is so fed up of feeling cold!

Pam said...

I really need to start taking tips from your posts on the flowers! I'm trying to encourage bees (and butterflies) and the gardens you visit are full of ideas!

Ragged Robin said...

Pam - Thank you. I get a lot of ideas too for plants to buy from gardens I visit. Herbs when they flower are really good e.g. thyme, marjoram, chives, sage, plus lavender, golden rod, buddleia, echinops, sunflowers, plus any wild flowers. I am sure you already have lots of these and they are all good for butterflies and hoverflies too :)

Rosie said...

It all looks so beautiful. I like the kitchen garden and the wild flower meadow. The Carolean garden and the yew trees are impressive too. Such a long time since we visited, we must go back soon. The flowers are wonderful. I've seen lots of bees around the garden this year but very few butterflies. Your Cardoon plant sounds wonderful:)

Ragged Robin said...

Rosie - Thanks so much. After Hidcote (I really must try and visit again this year) Packwood are my favourite gardens. I do hope you can visit again soon. A similar situation here - I am seeing far more bees than butterflies.

CherryPie said...

I love the gardens at Packwood House.

Unfortunately when we visited earlier in the year the Yew Tree garden was not accessible.

Ragged Robin said...

Cherry Pie - Thank you and what a shame about the yew gardens. I have noticed they do close certain parts at different times of the year.