The garden at Treasurer's House

The garden at Treasurer's with a view of York Minster

Escape the city and relax in the award winning garden next door to York Minster - free to enter on open days. Winner of the gold award for Yorkshire in Bloom for six consecutive years.

The history of the garden

When Frank Green bought the three houses that he used to create Treasurer's House, he also changed their gardens to the basic layout you can still see today. The basic principles of his style was the contrast of grass, tree and old stone. When excavating for the sunken lawn, so much old masonry was found, Frank thought it must have been used as a stonemasons yard for the neighbouring York Minster.


What to expect

The design of the garden is intended to reflect what the former owner, Frank Green, might have planted. The colours are muted and predominantly pastel tones of whites and blues with statements of grandeur and decadence, a reflection of the decoration and collection inside.

Take a short walk around to get a flavour of the garden in summer...

Planting fit for a gentleman

The borders were added in the 1930s when the National Trust first opened the house as a visitor attraction. There's a great variety of plants for a relatively small patch and colour lasts from February, well into October depending on the first frosts.

Highlights in early spring include iris, crocus and tulips. As the season moves on look out for peonies, wisteria along the walls and delphiniums. In the height of summer agapanthus, fuchsias and asters provide colour well into the start of autumn.

Figures and statues

Frank Green added the wrought-iron gates at the same time that he laid out the garden and the statues. There was a lead statue of Mercury, sadly no longer in the garden. However a replica has been created and adapted to use as a fountain. The pink sandstone figures you see are of Vulcan, Neptune and Ceres.  

Stone statues add to the grandeur of the space
Close up of a stone statue with a garden and stone house behind
Stone statues add to the grandeur of the space

A royal avenue

Alongside a great deal of house restoration, the avenue of London Planes leading to the garden door was planted sometime before June 1900. This was in time for the royal visit by the Prince and Princess of Wales. The team pollard the trees and this leads to their distinctive shape.

Escape the city

The garden is a tranquil oasis away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre. Sit a while and listen to the sounds and songs of the Minster bells or watch the wildlife hard at work. To keep noise to a minimum, the garden team only use electric or hand tools. Much of the plant material is composted and used as a mulch to keep waste to a minimum.

Gardener Steve trimming back the climbers in the garden
Treasurer's House gardener trimming hedges
Gardener Steve trimming back the climbers in the garden

You are welcome to bring your dog with you to enjoy the garden - please keep them on a short lead and take any waste with you, you will need to use the gate opposite Dean's Park to avoid entering the house. 

Look out for falcons

One of the more interesting spots in among the bees and butterflies in the garden are the Peregrine falcons who use York Minster as their nesting spot. You can often see them flying around and after the chicks have fledged in summer, they are quite noisy calling to be fed.

Other garden wildlife you might expect to see at different times of year are bees, butterflies, numerous birds and the occasional dragonfly darting around the water.

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