Kilver Court Garden, Somerset

 

Kilver Court

I tend to divide my friends up into categories.  As well as divisions of personality such as “sophisticated” (not many of these), “artistic” (quite a few), “dangerous” (enough) and “grown ups” (a couple), there are tribe types such as “sporting”, “virtual” “work”, “school” and of course “horticultural”. Sometimes they stray into more than one department, sometimes they are unclassifiable, occasionally we have known each other for so long I can’t quite remember how or why.   My friends Venn diagram is extremely complicated.

Last weekend I visited a very good buddy who now lives Somerset.  We have known each other for many years and she has recently placed one foot, or perhaps just a toe, from the “dangerous sporting” class into the “dangerous horticultural” one.  This meant that I wasn’t as surprised as I might have been a year ago when she suggested we visit Kilver Court garden, of which I had heard but never visited.  When she added that there was a nursery, restaurant and, wait for it ………….. designer outlet shopping, I was in the car with my handbag on my lap.

At this point I was going to recount some of the garden’s history but as I would just be copying it from their website you can read it yourself here Kilver Gardens.  And no, this is not lazy, it is clever.

Anyway I wasn’t disappointed.  It is a glorious garden.  When we entered through a sturdy oaken door, with intricate ironmongery, it hinted of the charm that was set to come.

So here a few photos, and few words but not many, to celebrate our visit.

Tulips Kilver Court

Everywhere there were large tubs of tulips in whack-you-straight-in-the-gob colours, here they enlivened the edge of the first millpond.

Kilver Court - lake

The garden is enhanced rather than dominated by the 19th century Charlton Viaduct.

Kilver Court - duck house

An adorable duck, or perhaps coot, house in the middle of the lake.  They used to have flamingos here, which necessitated slightly larger accommodation.

Kilver Court - Rockery

The rockery was outstanding and I surprised myself in how much I loved it.  Those who are young enough to carry it off without sounding daft might say it had a “retro” feel, with its close clipped conifers and alpine planting.  As I am not one of those people, I won’t.  This part of the garden was constructed in the 1950’s when this style was outrageously modern.  I think it’s time might have come again.  For me anyway and, as everyone knows, I have my finger on the horticultural pulse. You in the cheap seats, stop sniggering!

Kilver Court - Anemone

A single red anemone stood proud at the edge of the stream.

The parterre had some lovely planting combinations including these deep mauve lily tulips and sky blue early geraniums.  No picture of the actual parterre, must have been chatting.

Poncirus trifoliata

Lastly there was a curious shrub, with a serious personality clash, that a kind soul on Twitter identified for me.  It is a Poncirus trifoliata, or Citrus trifoliata, or the Japanese Bitter Orange.  Take your pick.  It has delightful cup-shaped white flowers (good news) and long vicious curved spines (not so good).

Kilver Court is not a large garden, nor does it need to be.   At present they are in the process of creating new areas of planting, vast mixed borders which I am sure will be stunning once finished. Unfortunately the organic vegetable garden was closed the day we visited.  So that is two good reasons to return another day.  And they have pink wheelbarrows, I have bagsied already.  Oh yes, and there is the shopping, but that is another story.

 

 

 

 

22 thoughts on “Kilver Court Garden, Somerset

  1. A vicarious day out with you and much enjoyed ,while it pours with rain here, after a morning mulching with lovely two year old grass cuttings
    Look forward to your next visit

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  2. Joth (my brother) lives about 500yards further up the road from Kilver Court…and has a completely blank slate of a garden – recently rotavated…next time take anything you have too much of…donations gratefully received! x x x

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  3. I like the rockery it would be criminal to remove such a well established feature just because of fashion. (I may be showing my age. Some people think capability brown destroyed more good gardens than he built). It was interesting to watch the gardener’s world film on their website. It is one to add to the garden visit wish list. Thanks for sharing.

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    • Always happy to oblige! Fashion in gardening is a thorny subject for me. You either like it or you don’t, neither is right or wrong. I loved it and I think you would too! The little nursery is good too, healthy looking plants at reasonable prices. I was nearly wooed by a Scilla peruviana but was worried about getting it home on the train!

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  4. A nice garden tour. Thanks. I wonder how many garden owners spend a fortune making a feature when it’s in fashion, two fortunes removing and replacing it when fashions change, and another two fortunes reinstating it when they change back again. Personally I love that rockery. And flamingo-coloured wheelbarrows. Um, nah! My (t)rusty green one’s enough.

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  5. Thank you, that was a lovely blog and gives Mr TT and I another highly recommended garden to visit. I agree that theirs is the way to do a good rockery. And is it particularly sheltered or is that a special early glowering geranium? Here the B** B** Bunny has undermined my precious Hydrangea ‘Marveille Sanguine’ so it is back in a pot in ICU, the hydrangea, not the Bunny.

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    • Thanks TT, let me know how you get on if you visit. Early geranium, lovely isn’t it. As for your Merveille Sanguine, not so Bloody Marvellous (hydrangea joke!). Three rabbits ran in front of my car today, in separate incidents. And no, I didn’t, I stopped and even reversed at one point when I couldn’t see where he had gone. Hope MS is better soon x

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  6. A lovely post, I have never been here, I must put it on the list. A good thing you didn’t buy Scilla peruviana. In my experience they stop flowering and grow ever more lush leaves each year.

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