Summer in the garden

A family group admiring the gardens

Enjoy the warmer weather and make lasting memories at this wonderful historic manor house with its rare 18th century terraced gardens in an early medieval landscape.

In the gardens and parkland

Take a relaxing walk around the garden. See the flower beds full of beautiful blooms and the lower terraces flourishing with fruit and vegetables.

The spring bedding will be in place until the end of May, it will be then removed for the summer display to be planted which may take up to two weeks. When in bloom, dazzling Blue Salvias and primrose yellow African Marigolds line the top terrace with mixed Phlox, Salvias and Cosmos on the Sundial terrace. The front of house will be planted with a mixed display  of Dahlias, Pelargoniums and Salvias.

As you continue towards the lion gates there's plenty to see in the fruit and vegetable garden: Beans, Beetroot and show-standard Sweet Peas, as well as Strawberries, Rhubarb and lots more. Some of the crops grown here will be used in the tea-room when they're ripe. Any surplus is left on the honesty benches for you to take home, for a small donation.

Want a longer walk? Why not branch out into the parkland? Look out for the ridges and furrows: features of medieval farming, as well as lumps and bumps which may hide medieval archaeology. Please be wary of livestock and shut any gates you use.

Canons Ashby's gardens are a welcome home for wildlife
Two bees on a sunflower
Canons Ashby's gardens are a welcome home for wildlife

Looking after nature

Here we plant for nature and wildlife, as well as for visitors. We choose nectar-rich plants to encourage our insect life, so look out for plenty of bees and butterflies.

We have wildlife homes and refuges behind the scenes, which provide fantastic places for growing biodiversity and habitats for creatures of all types. Read about our Medieval Stewpond restoration here.

Enjoy the sights and sounds of nature in our gardens and grounds
Wren singing against a blue sky
Enjoy the sights and sounds of nature in our gardens and grounds

Shaped by history

The formal terraced garden was created in 1710, in the time of Edward Dryden. It may have been designed by famous garden designers London and Wise, showcasing sharp lines, symmetry and formal elegance, reflecting other fashionable gardens of the time. Sadly, after centuries of splendour, the gardens fell into wilderness during the 20th century. The garden was recently reconstructed, based on the plans drawn up in the late 1800s by Sir Henry Dryden. 

Whilst you wander through the garden, keep an eye out for the original 18th century sundial, fascinating and unusual armour-style decorations above the gate posts, and the Shepherd’s Boy statue from 1713

Canons Ashby statue of the Piping Shepherd Boy
Canons Ashby Piping Shepherd Boy
Canons Ashby statue of the Piping Shepherd Boy

Treat Yourself 

After your walk, refresh by enjoying a light lunch or snack in our Stables tea-room serving delicious hot and cold food daily. 

For a gardening inspired keepsake, The Coach House shop has a range of gifts for the green fingered including the latest new release The National Trust School of Gardening: Practical Advice from the Experts. 

Every penny of profit spent here in the tea-room or shop stay at Canons Ashby to help us care for the historic house or the green outdoor spaces, keeping this space special for future generations.


A delicious treat in our tea garden.
Tea and cake among the flowers
A delicious treat in our tea garden.