We were welcomed to these gardens by Gordon Fenn , one of the owners of Stockton Bury. We gathered in the old cider press building and learned some of the history of this
site which dates back to 660.
The Bury was given the status of a Manor in the reign of Edward III and has changed its identity and usage over the years.
Surviving from the Middle Ages are a large fish pond, a Tithe barn and a pigeon house with its revolving ladder.
It is now a working traditional mixed farm with four acres of gardens which have evolved over the last twenty years and contains an impressive collection of plants.
On the formal lawn close to the house a very handsome monkey puzzle tree has pride of place---a good start for a visiting tree lover.
The gardens are informal, divided by low stone walls and hedges. There are many unusual trees, shrubs and plants, this is a plantsman's paradise.
We all admired the everlasting pea, Lathyrus rotundifolia with it's unusual rusty red flowers.
In what was originally a plum orchard there were island beds and these were heavily planted with a mixture of perennials including Aconitum, Campanula lactifolia , Asters and lovely Alstroemerias.
The kitchen garden was well stocked with a variety of quality vegetables and espaliered fruit trees, the produce from which is used in the restaurant in the Tithe barn.
In the pool garden orchids were everywhere, indeed Dactylorhiza sp was a weed in these gardens! There was a stunning Clematis Romantika climbing up one of the pillars, the darkest
purple I have ever seen.
I think everyone fell in love with the Dingle, formerly an old gravel quarry. Streams were gently tumbling down the slope, the banks lined with all colours of Primula florindae, Trollius and Iris ensata. Clematis fargesii wandered across the shrubs and ancient oaks looked down from the hedgerow. A delightful garden and a photographer's dream.
This was my third visit to Stockton Bury Gardens and it remains one of my favourites. It is open to the public from early April until October and well worth a visit .