I was totally unaware of my luck in finding Gravetye when originally researching hotels in England for our garden tour. I had never heard of Gravetye…
The hotel as it is now, began life in 1598 when it was built for Katherine Compton and Richard Infield, an ironmaster. In 1884, Gravetye became the home of William Robinson, author of “The English Flower Garden”, until his death in 1935. Under his stewardship, the garden became one of the most famous in England.
“Robinson’s ideas about naturalised plantings, allowing nature to flow into the garden were ground breaking.” He introduced new ideas and traditions that are almost taken for granted today.
He introduced the ‘mixed border’ or herbaceous border, mass planting perennials and bulbs and leaving no ground space open, thus creating ‘ground cover plants’!
Wild gardening and creating large drifts of perennials into meadows and woodland and waterside, was perhaps his most significant influence. He loved the idea of the wild garden joining the formal constraints – allowing nature and the structured garden to merge into one. Not only was our stay at Gravetye delightful, but I got to learn about William Robinson as well. I took over a hundred photos at Gravetye and below are a few. I might do another post showing more photos at a later stage.
|The naturalised garden tumbling down towards the formal gardens.|
|A sea of Alliums and the white wisteria about to flower|
|We were sorry to leave and will definitely be back!|