Turning to the left and walking along the front of the house you soon come to a garden with the most amazing clipped yew shapes – geometric forms in deepest green, with topiary peacocks on the top; a lovely mixture of formality and humour. That’s where the formality ends, however, as the spaces between the statuesque forms are packed with billowing perennials and the planting, whilst tightly concentrated in terms of the number of plants, has been allowed to indulge a pleasingly loose attitude as regards the boundaries provided by the landscaping. All this creates a pleasantly disorienting effect, and I realise that my recollection of exactly where the paths go is slightly confused as I grapple with my recent memories of this beautiful yet bonkers, Alice-in-Wonderland space. I remember at some point scaling some steps to the upper level in the peacock garden, which might cause access problems to those with limited mobility. But you have to remember that this was built as a family garden rather than a visitor attraction, something testified to by the narrowness of the paths in many places, especially where the plants spill out over them with apparently unruly abandon, as they often do, adding to the romance of the place.
|Ed almost gets eaten by the giant tetrapanax leaves|
An annual ticket continues to be absurdly reasonable, particularly since having seen the garden once, you will doubtless want to come back throughout the year.
More pictures can be seen here.