Gems of our gardens

The Italinate garden is made of many smaller distinct areas, the temple garden, the stumpery, the orangery, the spring garden and more.There's a wealth of beautiful plants throught the different areas at different times of the year, so there's always a reason to return.

We spoke to our team of gardeners to find out more about this fascinating garden. Over the next few months we're going to explore in more detail about each of the garden areas so watch this space as we tell the seasonal stories of our gardens.



    History of the Italinate garden

    Aerial view of the Italianate garden at Ickworth

    The Italianate garden was modelled on the gardens that  the 1st Marquess and his family had encountered in Italy. We've identified that our garden is the oldest of its kind in England and predates the semi-formal Italianate planting by at least 50 years. Surprisingly the gardens are not the work of a fashionable designer, the Hervey family had some keen horticulturalists in the personalities of the 1st Marquess himself, his son Lord Jermyn and his great nephew, Lord Howard de Walden.

    The Temple garden

    Temple Garden

    At the east end of the stumpery lies a small circular area that until recently housed a rose garden. At the eastern most point is a temple which was moved here from its original place near the orangery.
    Just as the stumpery provides a magical area to let your children's imagination run wild, this small garden is a haven for peace and quiet, where lots of beautiful plants have been placed to give your eyes a feast.

    The Spring garden

    carpet of colour in spring garden

    The area known as the Spring garden is reached by walking down the box avenue away from the temple and turning right. In the Spring the area is carpeted with many wild orchids and the grass is left uncut until much later in the year when the've died down so that they'll return the next year.

    The Stumpery

    The stumpery stretches the entire length of the garden below the terrace and is located in the south-eastern corner of the Italianate garden. It houses the largest collection of ferns in East Anglia which are planted in amongst other shade loving plants around ornamentally placed roots and stumps of dead trees. Within the garden there are stones from the Giant’s Causeway in County Antrim.

    Areas outside the Italianate garden


    Although the Italianate garden has much to offer, don't forget that there are many wonderful sights to see in the rest of the gardens. In Spring you can see naturalised plantings of snowdrops and aconites. You'll spot these in Geraldine's walk and the Albana walk and they all dervive from the original and oldest varieties and  make a spectacular display.