Things to do in the garden at The Vyne
There are nine hectares of garden surrounding the house at The Vyne. Two lakes, a walled garden, formal garden and meadow along with lawns and a herbaceous border sit neatly inside this area. There is plenty for you to explore through the seasons, from the 17th-century summerhouse to a 600-year-old oak tree.
Winter in the garden
Winter is the busiest time for the garden team, as heavy-duty work can take place when wildlife activity is at its lowest. Hedges and woodland can be maintained with minimal impact on nature.
Look out for these winter highlights:
- Light mist hanging over the surface of the lake in the morning
- Robins flitting about on the soil in the summerhouse garden, their orange-red chests standing out against the wintry backdrop
- Coots, mallards, moorhens and little grebes punting across the lake, forming v-shaped ripples in their wake
The walled garden
Dating back to the 18th century, the walled garden houses a variety of fruit and vegetables as well as a dahlia border. An ambitious restoration programme restored the glasshouse and the fruit and vegetable beds to their former glory.
Possibly the earliest domed garden building in England, the summerhouse dates from around 1635 and has been used as a banqueting house and a dovecote. Designed by John Webb and built in the shape of a Greek cross, it is one of two originally built.
Today, the remaining summerhouse is the focus of the formal garden with beds which reflect the shape of the structure itself. The bedding plants are chosen to complement the shades of the summerhouse during the seasons and the garden is enclosed by a yew hedge.
Hundred Guinea Oak
Frail but still standing, the Hundred Guinea Oak is now over 600 years old. William John Chute, who owned The Vyne in the late Georgian period, was offered £100 and later 100 guineas for the timber.
He flatly refused to sell the oak, which you can see for yourself at the top of the Lime Avenue.
Here, the informal layout gives the impression of a natural landscape that has emerged all by itself. Laden with seasonal colour, trees gently arc over the main path at intervals while the paths mown through the long grass bring you to the lakeside where you can spot waterfowl gliding across the lake.
Family activities in the garden
There are plenty of self-led trails around the estate for families to enjoy. Unfortunately ball games, frisbees, bikes, scooters and drones are not allowed on the estate. This is to prevent further damage to the house and grounds.
Find out what to see and do in the house at The Vyne. Explore the state rooms and servants' quarters and look out for beautiful treasures.
Enjoy a refreshment stop in the atmospheric tea-room at The Vyne. Treat yourself to a gift in the shop or get comfy in the window seat while browsing pre-loved books.
The Vyne is a three pawprint rated place. Find out about bringing your dog to The Vyne where you can explore the gardens together.
Discover the estate at The Vyne and take a walk through woodland, looking out for wildlife as you go. What will you spot?
Get the most out of the upcoming festive season by finding out the family-friendly things to do at The Vyne from 25 November, from exploring the house to self-led trails at this 17th-century family home.
From 18th-century water gardens and Arts and Crafts landscapes to intimate woodland gardens, there are so many places to discover.
Discover our gardeners’ top tips so you can make the most of your garden, plot or window box.
Our Hampshire gardens are brimming with lush colour in autumn. Magnificent dahlia borders, productive kitchen gardens, and panoramic views combine to give joy and inspiration at every turn.