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Visiting the garden at Felbrigg

Statue in the Kitchen Garden at Felbrigg Hall, Norfolk
Statue in the Kitchen Garden at Felbrigg Hall | © National Trust Images/Fisheye Images

Take some time to explore the garden at Felbrigg and see why visitors come back time and again to see what has changed. Discover the widely renowned Walled Garden, as well as the West Garden, which is home to the 18th-century Orangery.

The Great Wood at Felbrigg, with its eye-catching autumn foliage, is quite the spectacle. Walk down the beech-lined avenue on the Victory V walk, where the magnificent trees tower above, creating tunnels of colour.

The Walled Garden

Get up close to the double borders and herb beds and breathe in the scent of lavender, sage and mint. You can find many modern surprises within this traditional garden, including one of the few octagonal working dovecotes in the country, dating back to the early 1750s.

Old variety plants

There are some old figs trained against the south-facing wall of the herb border in the walled garden, thought to have been relocated to its present position around 1750. A quote in the ‘Eastern Arboretum’ from James Grigor in 1847 mentions that the figs were about 100 years old at the time, making them the only original plants from the garden of that period.

Unusual plants

Planted around 1860 is the 'Headache Tree' or 'Balm of Heaven', (Umbellularia californica), a very rare species in the UK.

The Bacchus Garden

Once called the ‘south lawn’ of the Walled Garden, over winter 2021 the garden team were busy transforming it. They've extended the climate resilient borders and added a new winter-proof path, so it can now be accessed safely all year round – in the past it had to be roped off during wet weather.

The lawn itself has two new sculptural mounds that have been sown with a wild flower meadow mix and underplanted with bulbs such as specie tulip ‘Little Beauty’. Planting includes 4 new ‘Fragrant cloud’ cherry trees, which in spring time will be covered in beautiful fragrant pink flowers. We also have Tai-Haku ‘great white’ cherries in this part of the garden too.

The borders have structural, drought tolerant plants such as Chamaerops humilis (Mediterranean Fan Palm – one of the hardiest palms) and Washingtonia robusta which is hardy to -6.

Artist blacksmith Toby Winterbourn created two new benches for this area and large pots decorated with a fig leave motifs with date palms in them. He also sculpted Bacchus, the Roman god of agriculture, wine and fertility, giving this area of the garden its name.

Trained apples in the Walled Garden of Felbrigg Hall
Trained apples in the Walled Garden | © National Trust / Jemma Finch

The West Garden

Although not as well known as the Walled Garden, the West Garden, which surrounds the house at Felbrigg, is a joy to the senses particularly in spring. Edged with a ha-ha, you can follow the gravel paths through the garden, amongst the trees and shrubs.

The Orangery

Built in 1704, the Orangery was designed to blend with the west wing of the house. In the 19th century the building was given a glass roof which, by 1958, had fallen in and was replaced by the one you see today, which is also now in need of repair. The building is currently closed to visitors while a conservation project gets underway.

Family visitors at Felbrigg Hall, Gardens and Estate, Norfolk

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