Virtual Chelsea is over and we hope you loved it as much as we did. There was so much to watch with many special moments – seeing the designers in their own gardens was an absolute treat and the mini masterclasses were brilliant. If you missed anything, the videos and articles are still online Catch up on Virtual Chelsea here.
Chelsea Flower Show is the finale on our Gardens of England & the Chelsea Flower Show tour. This is one of our most popular tours and for good reason – there really is nothing like an English garden in spring! Here are two gardens we visit that will inspire you with their spring beauty and unique story.
This beautiful historic Georgian Manor House and garden located in Hampshire, south west of London, were once in a terrible state after being bombed by the IRA. The challenge of restoring the ruined estate was taken up by Australian gardener Marylyn Abbott. Well known for her beautiful Southern Highlands garden Kennerton Green and her passion for cool climate gardening, Marylyn was the ideal person to take on this mammoth task. With buckets of determination and a vision driven by her love of gardens and opera, years of hard work paid off and today West Green House is considered one of England’s finest outdoor opera spaces.
Graham Ross has been friends with Marylyn for many years and last year visited West Green House with Better Homes and Gardens. It’s a wonderful visit through the garden with fascinating insights from Marylyn, plus you get a peek inside the exquisite greenhouse where our groups regularly have lunch!
Take a tour of West Green House Garden This week, West Green House created a virtual tour of the garden. It’s simply wonderful with views of the garden we’ve never seen before.
The now iconic Hidcote was once just muddy fields on a windy hilltop. It was Major Lawrence Johnston, a visionary plant collector, who turned these rural paddocks into one of Britain’s greatest gardens with a design so profound and unconventional that it forever influenced English landscape design.
In designing his “wild garden in a formal setting”, Johnston started by building a formal network of hedges. These corridors created garden rooms and framed lovely long views to the countryside. Next came the wild part, and Johnston filled the garden rooms with rare and unusual plants collected from his own plant hunting expeditions or given to him from other plant hunters. The result is the extraordinary garden we see today and will visit next year.
Take a tour of Hidcote Manor Garden with Lottie Allen, Head Gardener. To see what’s happening now in the garden, we’re introducing you to Lottie Allen, Hidcote’s Head Gardener. Lottie has been busy making weekly Spring Garden Tour videos and they are simply brilliant. Each of them is like taking a private tour. She gives updates on winter projects including showing the wisteria flourishing after a hard winter prune and the replenished gravel path in the Pillar Garden. Click on the image below to view Lottie’s latest video.
We highly recommend watching the whole series. They’re only a few minutes long but by the end of the series, you’ll get a wonderful perspective of how the garden is evolving through the season. If you’ve never seen a flowering Handkerchief Tree (Davidia involucrata), don’t miss #2 Spring Tour Video! You can find the complete spring video series here.
We have more virtual garden tours on Ross Tours Facebook including a glorious tour of Iford Manor with owner William Cartwright-Hignett. Follow us and keep up to date with all virtual tours and travellers photos.
If you’d like to join our Gardens of England & the Chelsea Flower Show 2021 tour, contact our travel team on firstname.lastname@example.org
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