Our best spring gardens

As the days get longer and warmer and nature reveals some of its best displays, a springtime stroll in the gardens we look after is sure to delight. Admire carpets of colour, wander among fragrant scents and see borders and archways flourish into life.

We’ve chosen some of our most dazzling gardens to visit in spring:

    Anglesey Abbey, Cambridgeshire

    Spring at Anglesey Abbey sees drifts of daffodils flourish throughout the grounds and over 4,000 hyacinths emerge in the meticulously maintained flower beds of the formal garden. A sea of delicate 'little beauty' will emerge in the silver birch grove to welcome the arrival of the new season.

    For more spring garden highlights in the east of England visit Blickling Estate to see hellebores and bluebells. 

    Bodnant Garden, Conwy

    Spring highlights in this celebrated garden include the rhododendron collection and the 55m long laburnum arch, which turns into a shimmering tunnel of golden blooms by late May. The dell, hidden deep within a wooded valley of the River Hiraethlyn, is also a riot of colour in spring.

    Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire

    Spread out around a lake, Clumber Park’s 3,800 acres of parkland and gardens are alive with birdsong in spring while the woodlands are carpeted with bluebells. The walled kitchen garden is famous for its rhubarb collection and apple varieties, which blossom during the spring months.

    Make a weekend of it and stay in a camping pod or wigwam.

    More spring gardens in the Midlands (PDF).

    Glendurgan Garden, Cornwall

    This sub-tropical garden blooms with magnolias, wild flowers and woodland flora including bluebells during the spring while young apple trees are growing in the recently planted orchard. Exotic trees and shrubs are dotted around the garden and there is also a wonderfully puzzling cherry laurel maze.

    Make a weekend of it and stay at one of Glendurgan Garden’s idyllic holiday cottages.

    For more spring garden highlights in Cornwall visit Trengwainton Garden to see magnolias, rhododendrons and camellias. 

    Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden

    Displays of snowdrops, wood anemones, primroses, celandines and bluebells lend a delicate natural backdrop to the magnificent abbey ruins and elegant water garden throughout spring. Cherry and blackthorn blossom light up the spring sky and wild garlic – used in the restaurant – scents the air.

    Make a weekend of it and stay at one of the 11 holiday cottages.

    Rowallane Garden, County Down

    A treasure trove of plants collected from around the world, spring is one of the most exciting times to visit Rowallane Garden. The renowned rhododendrons burst into colour while the magnolias, daphnes and azaleas are a must see in the magical walled garden.

    Sissinghurst Castle Garden, Kent

    Sissinghurst Castle Garden was created as a garden of ‘rooms’. The lime walk is also known as the spring garden and its long beds of tulips, fritillaries and hyacinths burst with colour for about four weeks. The delos is also a carpet of hues in early spring from pink ‘glory of the snow’ to blue scillas.

    Make a weekend of it and stay at Priest’s House. A stay at the holiday cottage offers the chance to see the white garden as it was designed to be viewed – by moonlight.

    For more spring garden highlights in London and the south east visit Fenton House and Garden to see the apple orchard full of blossom or Nymans to see camellias, magnolias and daffodils.

    Sizergh Castle, Cumbria

    Sizergh Castle has beautiful gardens to explore during spring. See the tulips on the top terrace, walk beneath cherry blossom in the Dutch garden and enjoy spring colours in the rock garden. There are also frogs, newts and birds to spot, as well as bees and hens in the apple orchard.

    Make a weekend of it and stay at Holeslack Farmhouse.

    Stourhead, Wiltshire

    Stourhead’s ‘picnic perfect’ lawns and parkland are filled with blooms and colour throughout the spring as a succession of azaleas, magnolias and rhododendrons bring the garden bursting to life. The lake at the centre of this world-famous landscape garden magnifies the seasonal colour.

    Make a weekend of it and stay at 89 Church Lawn.

    For more spring garden highlights in the south west visit Hidcote to see narcissus, Welsh poppies and the blossom-filled orchard.

    Wallington, Northumberland

    Follow in the footsteps of the outdoors-loving Trevelyan family at Wallington in springtime. Soak up the atmosphere of the tranquil East Woods or discover a colourful haven in the secret garden, hidden behind high walls at the bottom of a woodland valley.

Plants are affected by the weather and despite our gardeners’ best efforts, sometimes they don’t bloom when we expect. If you’re making a special journey do call beforehand and staff at our gardens will be delighted to give an update on what you can see.