Thursday 9 April 2015

Spring gardens at Polesden Lacey

Polesden Lacey rose garden
Polesden Lacey has everything you could expect of a National Trust estate. Nestled in the Surrey Downs there is an impressive house with royal connections, acres of woodland walks and of course a selection of formal gardens. So loved is Polesden Lacey that is it apparently one of the top ten most visited National Trust properties.
The National Trust was bequeathed Polesden Lacey in 1942 upon the death of its last owner Mrs Grenville. Known for her lavish parties and expensive tastes Margaret Grenville was the daughter of the multi-millionaire brewer William McEwan. In 1906 he bought Polesden Lacey for his only daughter but only two years later she found herself widowed and childless. With money, property and a freedom to do what she wanted Mrs Grenville moved in high circles. She was a friend of Queen Mary and invited the Duke and Duchess of York (the future King George VI and Queen Elizabeth) to stay at Polesden Lacey for part of their honeymoon in 1923.
During Mrs Grenville's time the former walled kitchen garden was turned into a rose garden. How many other gardeners wish their patch looked this neat and tidy in April? Come June this area will look amazing with all the different varieties of roses out in bloom.
For this year there is a new garden in progress. These borders have been planted up and are in front of a cottage which is available for holiday lets. Imagine waking up to see the beautiful sight of Polesden Lacey's garden each morning!
If there's one thing that the Victorians loved in a garden and that was ferns. This part of the gardens remain to this day. In the Rookery their lush green leaves carpet the floor in contrast to the barren soil in the Rose Garden.
Although the Rose Garden has taken the site of the former kitchen garden an estate this size still needs its own source of vegetables. Planting for the summer has already been planned out but some winter chard with brightly coloured stalks remain. Behind the kitchen garden are the resident chickens and two sets of bee hives.
With so many hedges to maintain you need to be able to sort out any repairs yourself. At the back of the Rose Garden there is a hedge nursery plus of course some emergency rose bushes. You wouldn't want one bad rose spoiling the whole planting scheme!
At this time of year the grounds around the house are filled with daffodils. In the ground and in planters you will see daffodils all over. In case some more are required there's plenty to chose from here.
On the subject of daffodils I'll leave you with this one. I've never seen this variety before but its frilly and extravagant corona sum up that was best about Mrs Grenville and her beautiful Polesden Lacey.

How Does Your Garden Grow


  1. That is a very neat patch indeed. In fact, this whole post has made me feel like I need to go and tidy up my garden haha. Seeing lots of white and orange daffodils at the moment, I think they might be my favourite colours.

  2. This looks like such a lovely garden to wander around. I'd love to see how it changes over the year x #hdygg

  3. what a great place to wander

  4. Oh to have a walled garden and proper Victorian cold frames .... we had the latter when I was a child and I used to love sliding the tops on and off.

  5. What a fabulous estate. I had never considered the need for stock for emergency patching and repairs before! #hdygg

  6. Now that is one fancy-pants daffodil! Just imagine the time and effort to keep the grounds so well maintained, makes me feel most lazy for the state of me garden! That area will look outstanding once the roses come into bloom won't it? Good old National Trust - always gives a good day out.
    Thanks for sharing and joining in oh Jibbery Jabbery one x

  7. Mrs Grenville sounds a hoot!
    Such gorgeous gardens, I just love how busy they are with plant life.
    That daffy is wonderful, I do love the variety of daffs out there, such a simple yet beautiful flower

  8. Gosh my garden is a rambling mess compared to the neatness here! It's so interesting to see everything at this time of year before so may of the wow blooms come out. Looks a great place to visit with some interesting history! #HDYGG

  9. Another one for my list of places to go and all the more for hearing about the fabulous Mrs Grenville. Wow they are really organised with all their 'back-up' plants, super behind the scenes look. I need frilly daffs in my life! Must look out for their bulbs at the some of the specialist summer shows.

  10. I used to live in a flat part of a country manor, Kyre Park in Worcestershire, that had walled gardens, they were slightly neglected but I could always imagine how wonderful they could look.

  11. I do love exploring NT gardens, especially now that spring is here as it's lovely to look for signs of growth and flowers blooming.

  12. wow! i really love the design of this one with all the square sections. it is all just so amazing.

  13. I've not been to Polesden Lacey yet - but now I want to - and yes I'd like a nice manicured garden like that please, at any time of the year would be nice! :) #hdygg


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