Three gardens to visit this weekend

George Plumptre
Pear Tree Cottage, Worcestershire - NGS

Pear Tree Cottage, Witton Hill, Wichenford, Worcestershire WR6 6YX

Many people visit gardens for peace and tranquillity as much as for ideas and education; Pear Tree Cottage offers both. The three-quarter-acre garden is on sloping ground around the fine Grade II traditional black and white cottage (not open). During the afternoon you can admire the striking planting – such as hydrangeas and small-flowered clematis – the quirky ornamental details (including a shed good enough to be runner-up as national “Shed of the Year”), and the views out across orchards to Abberley clock tower. Later, as the twilight appears, you can relax, look out for bats or listen for owls while the garden becomes illuminated with subtle lighting and candles.

Open Sunday August 25, 4pm-10pm. £5, home-made teas, wine after 6pm.

Crugsillick, Ruan High Lanes, Truro, Cornwall TR2 5LJ

Crugsillick, Cornwall Credit: NGS

If you are fortunate enough to be spending the bank holiday weekend anywhere in south Cornwall, don’t miss this open garden set in the idyllic countryside of the Roseland peninsula. On one side the garden drops away from the venerable house (not open) giving a view out across a wooded valley that is so typical of the Roseland. In a project that has been carried out over the past six years by the present owners, the descending levels are skilfully and imaginatively handled, with yew hedges and sweeping borders around an oval lawn on the upper level and a large pond and exotic trees and shrubs on a lower terrace. The wooded slope provides a backdrop to the walled kitchen garden and a hot garden, and the whole ensemble has great vitality.

Open Sunday August 25, 11am-5.30pm. Admission £5, children free, home-made teas, plants for sale, dogs welcome.

Church Gardens, Church Hill, Harefield, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB9 6DU

Church Gardens, Middlesex Credit: NGS

Visitors will be fascinated to discover that on the western edges of London, in the village of Harefield, is an ambitious walled garden project that dates back to the early 17th century and possibly earlier. Since 1995 this important site, one of the very few in the country to retain features of a renaissance garden, has been lovingly restored and brought back to life by its owners, Patrick and Kay McHugh. Historically, perhaps the most interesting feature is an arcaded brick wall, but today – and especially at this time of year when a spectacular late-summer flowering display of dahlias combines with fruit and vegetable crops – you will enjoy the rich variety in the pattern of geometrically arranged raised beds, long borders, and fruit trees trained against the walls. This is an ongoing restoration project of great commitment and you will leave impressed by what has been achieved.

Open bank holiday Monday 26 August, 2pm-5pm. Admission £5, children £2. Light refreshments.


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