Be inspired this autumn

Late into autumn there’s still colour to enjoy in the gardens

Late into autumn there’s still colour to enjoy in the gardens

Our autumn borders still boast colourful and interesting plants, although the deep swathes of colour from earlier in the year are now gone. There's lots to inspire you along the long border and late flowering clematis drapes the walls.

The parterre is being planted with thousands of bulbs and masses of colourful bedding, ready for a spectacular spring display.

The woodland garden is a tranquil haven, filled with scent from viburnums and mahonias.

What we're up to now

Our gardens team regularly post news of their exploits on our blog.

Take a look to find out what we're doing throughout the year - how we manage the gardens, what's happening behind the scenes and what we'll be doing in the future.

You can find out more on one of our exclusive garden tours and talks.

There are films from the garden team on our YouTube channel too.

Discover more in the gardens

Restoration work is beginning inside and outside the summerhouse © Jana Eastwood

Restoration work is beginning inside and outside the summerhouse

  • We're beginning desperately-needed restoration work on the little summerhouse that Mary Elizabeth had built for her grandchildren, funded in part by proceeds from the raffle tickets that our visitors have bought.
  • Stroll round the gardens and find inspiration for late season colour and interest.
  • Simply take a seat and enjoy our hard work or talk to our volunteers about anything that interests you.

Cornish lily

Delightful nerines flower in November along the wall in Green Court © National Trust

Find it along the wall in Green Court.

The sugar pink flowers of Nerine bowdenii look too exotic to be a hardy bulb that flowers in late autumn and early winter.

However, it's completely hardy in a sheltered spot and needs little or no watering in a dry summer.

The strappy foliage dies down completely, so be sure not to disturb the bulbs when planting around them.

Rice paper plant

The giant leaves of the rice paper plant make a bold statement © National Trust

Find it on the long border.

The huge leaves of Tetrapanax papyrifer 'Rex' make a bold statement in the border now that other plants have died down. We call it our 'T Rex' plant and like it so much that we're planning to plant some more to add structure to the whole planting scheme.

This herbaceous plant will die down in winter cold and make its dramatic reappearance next spring.

Pineapple sage

Late autumn colour in the gardens includes vivid Salvia elegans © National Trust

Find it on the long border.

Rub the leaves of Salvia elegans as you walk past and you'll know why it's called Pineapple sage or Tangerine sage. The delicious fruity scent will linger on your fingers as you continue your stroll around the gardens.

This easy-to-grow herbaceous perennial will need winter protection but we'll leave it to cheer the garden as long as possible.

Blue lilyturf

Evergreen perennial liriope muscari provides valuable autumn colour  © National Trust

Find it on the long border.

This is a reliable perennial (Liriope muscari) which provides valuable late autumn colour for any situation where it doesn't dry out completely in summer (this can make it reluctant to flower).

It will spread gently but not invasively, and the purple flower spikes are followed by glossy black berries which hold well in winter. The evergreen foliage helps keeps weeds at bay.

Winter interest

The gardens are open every day - come and enjoy the fresh air.

Enjoy the frosted sculptural forms in Green Court and look out for the first snowdrops.

The joys of spring

There are scented shrubs to lift your senses all around, and colour from thousands of bulbs in the parterre.

Enjoy the subtle pinks of masses of hellebores in the woodland garden.

Midsummer borders

Colourful bedding and scented purple heliotrope fill the parterre

There's something new in flower every week on the long border and around the croquet lawn.
Be inspired by the shady woodland garden and enjoy the rainbow of colours in the parterre.

The gardens in summer.