On our recent break in Suffolk I was keen to get some garden visits in, as it turned out we only managed one, and that was on our trip home. But what a one. Helmingham Hall is a private garden that's close to Stowmarket and full of garden 'rooms'. Today I'm sharing pictures from the knot garden, and for a hedge fanatic like me, it was bliss.
I mean, just look.
It was actually the last part of the garden we visited and despite what you might think, this garden was only formed in 1982. Yes I know that's thirty-five years ago (I don't know how that is either) but it's not as old as the gardens which have a five hundred year history.
The knot garden was created to be "historically sympathetic" to the house and provide visual interest when viewed from the house and the raised walkways that surround it. And it definitely works.
There are two knot patterns, both divided into four squares. Which is a lot of box. The patterns include the Tollemache fret (the Tollemache family own the estate) and some of the squares are inter-planted with herbs, others with plants themed around those introduced to Britain before 1750.
MOH was of course resigned to the fact I'd be taking plenty of pictures of hedges. He's used to that by now.
Eventually I made it through the garden to the statue, where like him I was fascinated by the bubbly plant surrounding its base. Not what I expected at all but I think I quite liked it.
The beds behind the statue were more formal borders than the front half of the garden, with many more herbs in the planting. The sweeping grass paths were a winner for me.
As was the dill, which was in full flower on our visit. It seems the local wasps were also thankful for that too.
It's great to explore privately run gardens as I think they really do have a different feel to the National Trust gardens that we so often make a beeline for. These gardens always pique my interest and wonder at how the same plants can be put together to give such a different feel. I've plenty more posts to come from Helmingham Gardens, and I don't think there'll be a garden you won't enjoy. So if you're in the area, I can highly recommend a visit in person.