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Garden Visit | Glorious Gardens of Gloucestershire

Badminton House, Well Cottage and Mary Keen's garden

Our day starts with morning coffee at the Cotswolds home of landscape designer and horticulturist Catherine FitzGerald. Catherine’s garden is in the very early stages of development, so rather than a tour she will talk us through some of her plans for the garden as we enjoy refreshments overlooking the terrace.

We will then visit the nearby historic town of Marshfield where landscape designer and author Mary Keen will welcome us to her beautiful new ‘burgage plot’ garden. This compact atmospheric plant-filled garden, which Mary started six years ago when she moved from a much larger one, is an admirable lesson in how to downsize and still make room for your favourite plants. Mary has transformed a large dull lawn and tall boundary planting into an immersive plant experience of texture, form, light and colour. Structured around a sheltered courtyard, flowering meadow and a small orchard, the garden is packed with select roses, perennials, shrubs, small trees and climbing plants. A greenhouse, potting shed, cut-stone Wendy house and auricula theatre complete the scene. We will also visit Mary’s nearby allotment garden where she grows vegetables, soft fruit and cut flowers.

Following a seasonal lunch at a historic inn, we will be welcomed by Miranda, Duchess of Beaufort to her enchanting garden at Well Cottage on the Badminton estate, which she has created since 2017. It contains an informal profusion of roses, clematis and perennial plants set within a formal structure of clipped hedges and topiary. There is a small wild garden, cutting and vegetable patches.

We then proceed to historic Badminton House to be welcomed by Georgia Beaufort, who is the present Duchess of Beaufort, for a private visit to the magnificent Grade I registered gardens. Set in extensive parklands, the gardens have been developed since the seventeenth century. Our tour will focus on the formal East Garden with parterres created by Russell Page in 1984; the South Garden with rose beds, water squares and borders, developed in the 1980s by the 11th Duke and Duchess in collaboration with designer François Goffinet; the Orangerie Garden with climbing roses, round swimming pool and fountain. Finally, we will see the Walled Garden, where Georgia has developed the fruit, vegetables and cutting beds to supply the house with fresh produce and home-grown flowers for much of the year. We will conclude our visit with afternoon tea.

This event has been organised by the Garden Museum’s Garden Visits committee. We recommend you read our Garden Visits Attendee Charter and Refund/exchange policy before booking your place on any of our Garden Visits.

Image: © Jonathan Buckley, Britt Willoughby Dyer, Jason Ingram