The Borders

The High Border subtly changes with each season: in spring it is awash with tulips and forget-me-nots and wallflowers, which give way to alliums, aquilegias and annual poppies before a summer quilt of geraniums, heleniums, dahlias, asters and ornamental grasses, inter-planted with exotic tender plants and annuals, carries colour into the late autumn. The woodland garden shrugs off the gloom of the depressing January days with bright snowdrops and hellebores, and later with spring bulbs and fabulous shade lovers. In May and June the peony garden is painted with the pastel colours of its blousy blooms against rampant wisteria, and in late summer the Long Border is a sea of the exuberant colours of unusual summer bedding, such as zinnias, salvias and cosmos.

The borders on either side of the central steps are devoted to Mediterranean species, which are arranged in a wilder and less formal planting design. The new Rose border, framing either side of the top lawn, are planted up with a fine selection of traditional shrub roses with meandering under-planting of Lady's mantle, catmint and calamintha.