TOP TEN YORKSHIRE GARDENS TO VISIT THIS SPRING

Written by: Little

Yorkshire is a garden lover’s heaven with over a hundred  gardens to visit within the county and  the surrounding region. You will be spoilt for choice.

Spring has finally arrived and it is now  the time to get out and visit some of these wonderful Yorkshire gardens. Our top tips are to check out the following guides and websites and you will then be well equipped and armed with the knowledge of where to visit either locally or further afield. For those wanting to explore Yorkshire there is always something new  to discover.

First of all pick up our free Go Yorkshire Mini-Guide packed full of great discounts to great places to visit, it includes vouchers for a number of gardens. Download our Go Yorkshire App which also offers great discounts so you will always be sure of the latest offers.

Pick up the 2016 copy of the Great Castles, Houses and Gardens which details all the most important gardens in Yorkshire. There is one for Cumbria too called Cumbria’s Living Heritage and finally, the invaluable little yellow book promoting the National Garden Scheme of both historic and private gardens, is a must have for anyone passionate about gardens. This excellent and well run scheme, which runs throughout the country, raises millions for charity each year as well as bringing immeasurable joy and satisfaction both to the visitors and those that open their gardens under this scheme.

Not only do many historical gardens open and donate their admissions for at least one day in the year towards supporting this group, but private individuals through to whole villages participate too. Visiting these private gardens gives a marvellous insight into the wonderful hidden gardens of Yorkshire and is an invaluable and informative way of improving your gardening knowledge. Here is our list in no alphabetical order:

  1. Acorn Bank Gardens – a stone’s throw from the market town of Appleby, this garden is a tranquil haven of peace and calm. Wander along the Crowdundle Beck to the partially restored watermill, enjoying wildlife in the woods on the way, and discover about the history of gypsum mining on the estate. Enjoy the views across the Eden Valley to the Lake District from the magnificent backdrop of the sandstone house.


  1. Bolton Castle – Leyburn is a relatively new garden which was inspired by the current owner Lord Bolton who recreated this medieval garden in the grounds below the castle.  There is a maze to keep the young ones happy, a vineyard to keep the older ones happy and a beautiful rose garden for everyone to enjoy.


  1. Constable Burton Hall Gardens, between Bedale and Leyburn  – home to the national collection of tulips.  There is still time to feast your eyes on these beautiful gardens that come alive with a magnificent display of tulips at this time of year.  The handsome Palladium  house is a wonderful backdrop to the gardens and house tours for groups can be arranged.


  1. Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal Water Garden - is a World Heritage site and the jewel in the crown of the National Trust’s properties in the North of England.  Created by the Aislabie family, it is one of the most important water gardens in Europe and England’s finest.


  1. Harlow Carr Gardens – Harrogate is the RHS’s most northerly garden in England and is a wonderful oasis of calm situated just outside the busy town nearby.  It is a joy to visit each year as there is always something new to discover.  They also run excellent courses throughout the year.


  1. Helmsley Walled Gardens – Just waking up after its winter slumbers is this wonderful walled garden tucked away behind Helmsley Castle. It was once the kitchen garden of the nearby Duncombe Park Estate but lay neglected and unloved for many years until it was discovered by the late Dr Alyson Ticehurst who transformed it a haven or peace and tranquillity. It is one of the ‘hidden gems of Yorkshire’.


  1. The Himalayan Gardens – near Masham boast one of the most important collections of rhododendrons and azaleas in the country and is a must see place to visit. The garden is situated on the side of a valley so sadly it is not suitable for those with a disability or who find walking especially uphill difficult.


  1. Scampston Walled Garden - near Malton was created in the derelict kitchen gardens of Scampston Hall.  Designed by the famous landscape gardener Piet Oudolf in 1999, it’s unashamedly modern feel complements the surrounding parkland designed by the 18th century designer Capability Brown.


  1. Thorp Perrow Arboretum – near Bedale, boasts the finest national collection of trees throughout the country. Now is the time to visit this stunning estate. Walk amongst the avenues of flowering cherries and wonder at the trees bursting into life. There is plenty to entertain the young at heart too with nature trails, an adventure playground and a falconry centre. They have meerkats too!


  1. Yorkshire Lavender – situated in an Area of Natural Outstanding Beauty on the Hambleton Hills near Castle Howard, this garden has amazing views over the Vale of York below. From the end of May until late July the fields are awash with purple lavender and it is an ideal place to stop for a while.