We spent a Sunday in May at both Sissinghurst (one of the National Trust’s busiest gardens) and then Pashley Manor.
Honestly, I couldn’t understand why Pashley Manor wasn’t as busy as Sissinghurst (which is almost always packed, so much so that some advise against visiting) as it is lovely and its gardeners make a real effort to ensure there is year-round interest: bluebell walks, thousands of tulips in Spring and sculpture exhibitions are just three examples. Plus, there is a sandwich house: Tudor front and Queen Anne rear.
Due to the late Spring of 2013 we were able to see tulips, rhododendrons, bluebells and roses all out at the same time.
The garden is 5 minutes’ drive from a couple of lovely garden centres (see my garden centre links on the resources page).
It was idyllic to sit on the terrace, drinking tea and eating scones with cream. In the absence of the “National Trust Effect” life can seem a lot more enjoyable sometimes.
The walled garden has at Pashley Manor has been divided – half is a vegetable garden and the other half a flower garden. It’s everything I’d want in a garden.
I’m slowly coming to terms with how effective sculpture is in gardens (although I always worry about it getting stolen).
The beautiful lady above is by Philip Jackson. His website is here http://www.philipjacksonsculptures.co.uk/
Pashley Manor belongs to the Historic Houses Association and for most of the year entry is free for members. Yippee. It’s only 20 minutes’ drive from Sissinghurst, but feels a million miles away while (for me) offering so many more ideas than the over-publicised garden Sissinghurst was able to. Go there!
When visited: May 2013
Theme tune: The Good Life