The Gardens of Abbots Ripton Hall
Your visit will leave you amazed at the diversity of this stunning garden.
The Hall gardens cover an area of 8.5 acres (3.4 hectares) with managed parkland and a 10 acre (4 hectare) lake. All areas are open to the public during the garden show.
The gardens consist of many fine old trees, large lawns ,shrub rose borders, herbaceous borders , grey border, bog garden and mixed borders. There are many follies designed by Peter Foster around the garden including a gothic trellis in the herbaceous border and the constable pavilion at the end of the lake.
The present Lord De Ramsey’s father moved into the hall in 1937 and started to make major changes and restorations to the garden, he was advised by Humphrey Waterfield and along with Lady De Ramsey they set about changing the garden to what it is today. From a good basic framework of old trees and lawns they added borders, roses and mixed plantings.
The present Lord and Lady De Ramsey are carrying on with this work, improving borders re-planting areas where age is beginning to show, adding new plants to the ever growing collection commissioning new hard features and maintaining the follies. They have also started a fine collection of red list and unusual oak trees, acorns are collected from around the world propagated then planted out in the garden and parkland.
Near to the house are large close mown lawns and a huge London plane tree (PLATANUS x acerifolia) and terrace, leading across the lawn are mixed white borders shaded borders and a circular old fashioned shrub rose border many roses are from the original planting although a regular replacement scheme is in practice , in this area there are also fine tree specimen’s including Metasequoia glyptostroboides and Betula papyrifera and the bog garden. The ‘bury Brooke’ cuts the garden into two halves , bridges cross in three places , crossing via the oak bridge at the back of the rose circle leads below two old oak trees dated to around 1600 to the thatched summer house tennis court and old orchard under planted with spring bulbs so the grass is allowed to grow long.This area also contains a young Wollemi pine . Wollemia is a genus of coniferous tree in the family Araucariaceae. Wollemia was only known through fossil records until the Australian species Wollemia nobilis was discovered in 1994 in a temperate rainforest wilderness area of the Wollemi National Park in New South Wales, in a remote series of narrow, steep-sided sandstone gorges near Lithgow, 150 kilometres north-west of Sydney. Following the mown paths leads to the old croquet lawn now planted with some of Lord De Ramsey’s fathers favourite trees and the first planting of the oak collection.
The herbaceous border backs the trees and runs 90 degrees to the Brooke it is backed by clipped yew cylinders inter planted with Philadelphus coronarious aureus , The herbaceous border is a double border 12 feet deep in places and is 150 yards long although this is a formal border the planting is done on a cottage garden theme with many unusual herbaceous plants with a gate as the vista focal point at the far end, after walking down the border turn right through an ornamental gate designed by George Carter and into an oak planting following the path leads to a rose arch with about 50 roses tied and clipped to the hoops and swags of an old iron frame under planted with lavender through gravel the laws here are planted with ornamental and culinary fruit , the rose arch leads to the grey border and garden boundary wall the grey border being started in the early 50’s has some unusual grey plants ,the soil here being changed from the cold boulder clay the garden sits on to a free draining gravel rich soil to help the planting turning right at the bottom there is the old monastic eel pond filled with water lilies just behind are some old fruit trees with the rose ‘La Mortola’ climbing with its enormous trunk almost as big as the tree it’s in, crossing the Chinoiserie bridge leads back to the house and main lawn.