Our garden conservation plan

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Restoring the gardens to their former glory - and keeping them that way!
Mount Stewart Gardens

Here at Mount Stewart, we love our gardens, and we're sure you do, too. We have just completed a Garden Conservation and Management Plan that will guide us in making the right decisions in looking after this wonderful garden – 'for ever, for everyone'.

We start by looking at each 'garden room', like the Italian Garden, in detail and researching its past. We make an analysis of each area's history, past and current planting. This in turn helps us identify and prioritise what we need to be doing now to ensure its long-term conservation and restoration.

What's the significance of our gardens?

Mount Stewart Gardens, by virtue of their creators, horticulture, plant collection, design and microclimate, are established as an unrivalled example of 20th-Century gardening, and have been nominated as an UNESCO World Heritage site.

We've put together a phased programme of work for the next 6 years, an exciting journey to 'rediscover the garden'. Some historical features will be reinstated - for example, this spring we're creating a new arched walkway next to the Mairi Garden. Others will be repaired and restored. Most importantly, new plantings will keep the garden fresh and inspirational to our growing number of visitors.

Hard work for a worthwhile cause

There will be many opportunities and challenges for us in the next few years – not least the inevitable impact of climate change on our management of the garden – the delightful unpredictability of our weather (we've just had the coldest winter on record) and the drive to reduce our carbon footprint.

We are in the process of recording all our plants in a new database. In order to conserve this great collection we need to know what we've got!  So far, with the help of volunteers, we've catalogued over 10,000 specimens. And with our new nursery facilities in the old walled garden, we're all set to produce new plants for use in our own gardens and for sale to visitors.

Come and discover exciting new developments and old favourites regaining their former glory!