Whether you’re a green-fingered guru or a complete nature novice, head to one of Gloucestershire’s many green spaces and pick up some top tips, taking the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors across the county.
From perfectly-mowed lawns with flowers galore, to wild walks and magical meadows, SoGlos has plucked 12 glorious Gloucestershire gardens for you to explore in this hot list.
Sudeley Castle and Gardens
Steeped in history and boasting royal connections, Sudeley Castle and Gardens in Winchcombe benefits from an abundance of flowers throughout the seasons. Most famous are the 70 different varieties of roses in the Queens’ Garden – so named because Katherine Parr, who is buried at Sudeley, as well as Anne Boleyn, Lady Jane Grey and Queen Elizabeth I, have all walked there.
Batsford Arboretum spans 56 acres of stunning parkland, offering one of the finest botanical collections in the country, with over 1,500 different species of trees, beautiful grounds, wildflower areas and a haven of wildlife waiting to be discovered.
Painswick Rococo Garden
Offering follies, statues, water features and creative planting, Painswick Rococo Garden is the perfect place to see seasonal flowers, with daffodils and fruit blossoms in spring and tulips and heritage roses in summer, while September and October are perfect for soaking up the splendour of the autumn colours.
Dubbed ‘a calm oasis in a busy world’, Berkeley Castle’s gardens boast a natural wonderland, with rare plants, shrubs and trees, as well as a tranquil lily pond and walled garden. There are also signs from times gone by, including the sloping bowling green, where Queen Elizabeth I is thought to have played while staying at the castle.
One of the most spectacular tree gardens in the world, Westonbirt Arboretum boasts 15,000 labelled trees waiting to be discovered, with 17 miles of paths to explore, taking visitors through exotic plants, ancient woodland and species-rich grassland.
Home to the Duke and Duchess of Beaufort, the Badminton Estate has magical private gardens, where you’ll discover something new at every turn. With glorious displays of roses and borders of soft summer colours, there’s so much to see, including a variety of plants and formal beds designed by landscape architect, Russell Page.
Within the private residence of the Prince of Wales, the Royal Gardens at Highgrove offer a stunning setting for guests to pick up gardening inspiration, with pre-booked tours taking visitors through an abundance of Britain’s most beautiful flora and fauna.
Westbury Court Gardens
Said to be the only restored Dutch-style water garden in the country, visitors can expect to find a place of elegance and calm, with straight canals, clipped hedges, working 17th-century vegetable plots and old-fashioned orchards at Westbury Court Gardens in Westbury-on-Severn.
Offering a charming hillside garden, Owlpen Manor encompasses magnificent yew topiary, old roses and box parterres, with the chance for guests to take a circular walk around the early Georgian mill pond and lake, fed by seven springs.
Bringing a taste of India to the Cotswolds, the Sezincote gardens were restored in 1968 after being neglected during the Second World War and now boast a curving conservatory home to climbing plants, as well as an Indian-style pavillion and water garden where many rare plants can be seen.
Hidcote Manor Garden
Hidcote Manor Garden is an internationally-renowned garden, comprised of several small and surprising gardens, with a host of unusual varieties of plants, miles of hedges and spectacular colours from Japanese acers.
Lodge Park and Sherborne Estate
With woodland, wildlife, wonderful views and a landscape of rich history, visitors can enjoy getting closer to nature at Lodge Park, which has a number of trails for walks around the Cotswold countryside, too.