Spring in the garden at Mottisfont

Daffodils in bloom in front of the font stream at Mottisfont, Hampshire

Discover delightful displays of blossom and greenery as you stroll along our riverside pathways. Our gardens burst to life in spring, from colourful sprouting bulbs to newly hatched ducklings and cygnets taking to the water.

We've planted masses of mixed, naturalising bulbs under ancient trees, in the winter garden, the walled gardens, and in the cherry orchard. Maud Russell’s head gardener, Mr Buckle, started the tradition of ‘bulk planting’ a single plant variety which has since been adopted by subsequent head gardeners.

Bright yellow daffodils are always a cheering sight. In our gardens, you'll find big, colourful displays spread out near the font, and clustered by the pathways of the winter garden.

Crocuses create a pretty pattern underneath an archway of magnolia, which will blossom with its own distinctive white flowers during the spring. Nearby, a carpet of periwinkle blue chionodoxa sweeps down the lime tree avenue in April.

This carpet of chionodoxa is a delightful sight in spring
		Blue chionodoxa sweeping down the Lime Avenue at Mottisfont, Hampshire
This carpet of chionodoxa is a delightful sight in spring

Tulips in the parterre, lime walk and central walled garden provide the finale of our bulb showcase, leading into early-flowering roses. Depending on the weather conditions, our rose collection may start blooming in May, ahead of their main flowering season in June.

Spring in our new Kitchen Garden

The first spring vegetables will be planted in our new Kitchen Garden in early March: mixed salad leaves and perennial herbs, including medieval varieties that would once have been planted here in the old priory gardens.

We'll also be planting out the apple 'Bloody Ploughman’, which will in time become a structural feature trained as a Belgium fence, and a number of grape vine varieties in the pergola beds to complement the gourd displays later in the year.

Wooden pergolas reminiscent of cloisters run the length of the garden
Wooden pergolas planted with growing gourds and vines in the Kitchen Garden at Mottisfont
Wooden pergolas reminiscent of cloisters run the length of the garden

Planting structures made from estate coppiced hazel will be prepared during March and April, and we should see an early modest display of apple blossom appearing on the young apple trees which surround the water feature.

Raised beds planted with vegetales and a pergola in the Kitchen Garden at Mottisfont

Creating our Kitchen Garden 

Thanks to money raised through the Walled Garden Appeal, we've created a new Kitchen Garden in the area formerly known as the 'Frameyard'. The new design reflects both Mottisfont’s medieval history and the garden's productive past.

Bluebells on the wider estate

Out on the wider estate, our ancient woodlands put on a wildflower show for spring. Species such as lady's smock (also known as the cuckoo flower), celandines and bluebells begin to cover the meadows and woodland floor. 

Our estate walk is the best way to see this annual flowering.

Bluebells in bloom on a woodland floor, in the wider estate of Mottisfont, Hampshire
Walking trail

Mottisfont estate walk 

From mid-April and into May, our woodlands offer one of Britain's most beloved natural sights: floods of bluebells in flower. Take our 6 mile estate walk to spot pretty periwinkle patches decorating the woodland floor, particularly at the start of the walk in Spearywell, and later in Queensmeadow and Great Copse. A protected species in the UK, the common bluebell is a fragile flower; please stick to the defined footpaths while you walk, and leave the flowers in their natural environment, for everyone to enjoy.