The Douglas Fir Walk at Knightshayes

A central grassed path runs between large Douglas Firs on a bright day

Introduced to Britain in 1827 from the Rocky Mountains by David Douglas some of the Douglas Fir trees at Knightshayes were planted as far back as the 1870’s. Today it’s one of the most important collection of Douglas Firs in the country and includes some of the tallest examples in England

Accessed by the iron gate at the east end of the Kitchen Garden you can follow the meandering mown grass paths through the trees as the scent of pine fills the air.

A result of “Conifer Craze”

During the Victorian period the race was on to bring new and exotic trees to the UK which could act as specimens for propagation across the country. The winners of this race were able to name the newly discovered trees and everyone, or at least everyone with a large enough estate, wanted to own them.

In designed landscapes such as the Douglas Fir walk at Knightshayes architects used different trees and plants to create moods and the darker wood of the conifers provide a stark contrast to the brighter areas of the walk.