Explore Belton's summer gardens

Belton House

Summer is well and truly on the way, and what better way to spend a summer's day than wandering through Belton’s charming gardens?

The Italian Garden

What is now the Italian Garden was remodelled extensively in 1816 to include the Orangery, fountain and Lion Exedra. This year our dedicated gardeners are returning much of the garden’s lost planting scheme.

Belton’s head gardener, Jon, has worked from historic plans, photos and paintings to recreate the deep herbaceous borders running through the centre of the Italian Garden. The borders will bring added colour and interest over the summer months.

A historic photograph from Belton's collection of the gardens deep herbaceous borders
A historic photograph from Belton's collection of the deep herbaceous borders running through the centre of the Italian Garden
A historic photograph from Belton's collection of the gardens deep herbaceous borders

In July, blue agapanthus makes a striking display in front of the Orangery. While deep red 'Bishop of Llandaff' dahlias also look superb with their ruffled petals catching the sunlight.

The Orangery at Belton House
Belton House
The Orangery at Belton House

Works to restore features of the Italian Garden as they appeared in the late 1820s are ongoing.

In and around the Orangery

Overlooking the Italian Garden, the Orangery is home to a collection of lush foliage and exotic blooms. Californian and Kentia Palms add texture and height. Pelargoniums frame a tranquil pool, serenely overlooked by the Belton Bather statue.

Lush foliage and exotic blooms inside Belton's Orangery
Inside Beltons Orangery
Lush foliage and exotic blooms inside Belton's Orangery

In the walled garden behind the Orangery, old-fashioned sweet peas, deep blue delphiniums and fragrant roses are a delight.

Cleome spider flower amoung Belton's herbaceous border
Cleome spider flower amoung the herbaceous border at Belton House
Cleome spider flower amoung Belton's herbaceous border

The twelfth-century parish church of St Peter and St Paul, beside the Orangery, belongs to the Lincoln Diocese but is regularly open to visitors and certainly worth a visit.

The twelfth century parish church of St Peter and St Paul at Belton
Belton's twelfth century parish church is owned by Lincoln Diocese
The twelfth century parish church of St Peter and St Paul at Belton

The Dutch Garden

The garden takes its name from the layout of the colourful parterres divided by topiary-lined gravel paths and was inspired by a Dutch design.

Bee amongst the lavender
Belton Bee amongst the lavender in the Dutch garden
Bee amongst the lavender

The perfect symmetry makes the Dutch Garden a wonderful place to relax and enjoy the delightful fragrance of lilac, orange blossom and lavender. Dark green and golden yew balls perfectly offset weathered stone planters and purple salvia.

Belton House in Pride and Prejudice
The North Front at Belton House, a restoration country house built 1685-88
Belton House in Pride and Prejudice

One of Belton’s most favoured views is from the Sundial looking back at the honey-coloured stone of the house and North Terrace steps. This view featured as Lady Catherine de Burgh's home 'Rosings' in the 1995 BBC TV series of Pride and Prejudice, starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle.

A stroll through the Pleasure Grounds

The Pleasure Grounds are an idyllic spot for a stroll along winding paths surrounded by a range of seasonal wildflowers, taking in features such as the mirror pond and temple.

Belton House Mirror Pond
A reflection of the garden temple in Belton’s mirror pond
Belton House Mirror Pond

Look out for the ha-ha, with views across the parkland and take time to enjoy the tranquillity of the lakes.

The Swiss fishing lodge on Belton's lake
Belton's Swiss fishing lodge on the lake
The Swiss fishing lodge on Belton's lake

Pause by the statue of Ceres where the creamy, snapdragon-like flowers and leafy branches of the Indian bean tree frame another perfect view of the house.

Creative Women

This year we introduce you to four creative women of Belton with trails that celebrate their life and work. The gardens explore the lives and work of Sophia Cust and Florence Woolward.

As the daughter of the first Earl Brownlow, Sophia spent much of her youth at Belton and, throughout her life, painted what has now become an invaluable collection of watercolours.

The Mirror Pond at Belton, watercolour by Sophia Cust
The Mirror Pond watercolour by Sophia Cust, Lady Tower
The Mirror Pond at Belton, watercolour by Sophia Cust

The trail shows how Sophia’s paintings have helped shape the conservation work at Belton in ways that may not have been possible without her legacy.

Florence was a self-taught botanical illustrator and it was undoubtedly at Belton that her fascination with botanical drawing took hold.

The workstation of Florence Woolward in Belton's Orangery
This year we introduce you to four creative women of Belton with trails that celebrate their life and work.
The workstation of Florence Woolward in Belton's Orangery

Much of her professional work centred on orchids and so an exhibition of her drawings and her workstation has been placed in the Orangery as part of the garden trail.

Say hello

You may spot Jack, Richard, Pete or Ellie, Belton’s gardeners, edging the lawns or clipping the yew. Belton’s dedicated team of garden volunteers can also be spotted planting and weeding the immaculate borders.

Our gardeners are always on hand for a chat, whether you want to know more about Belton’s plants and flowers or you need some tips for your own summer garden.

What’s more, every time you explore Belton’s summer colour, your support helps us care for these special gardens for ever, for everyone.

Whatever the time of year, Belton's gardens are picturesque. Please share your snaps with us via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.