This week I visited the Harold Hillier Gardens near Romsey. I’ve never visited this lovely place before, even though it is less than ten minutes by car from me.
The 180 acre gardens were established in 1953 by the distinguished plantsman Sir Harold Hillier. They currently hold one of the world’s most important plant collections with over 42,000 plants from temperate regions around the world.
I freely admit that I am not a gardener. I don’t know the names of many plants, I don’t know when or where you should plant them, or how tall they grow. But I do appreciate the beauty of plants, the colours, and the amazing variety.
The Gardens display a stunning range of plants including 14 National Plant Collections, a Gurkha Memorial Garden, Pond and Bog Garden, one of the largest Winter Gardens in Europe, and Children’s Education Garden which was opened by Sir David Attenborough. There is also an absolutely stunning double Centenary border, with around 30,000 plants, one of the largest in the country.
This Summer, the arboretum is holding an exhibition called Art in the Garden, which is an exciting outdoor sculpture exhibition displayed in the beautiful setting of this world famous 180 acre Garden.
Over 100 monumental sculptures are attractively displayed in the garden galleries and include award winning, local, new and established British artists and artists from overseas.
I definitely recommend a visit to these lovely gardens. There is a fabulous cafe, an indoor art gallery, and many outdoor picnic tables. I only saw a small part of the whole Gsrden, and am looking forward to a further visit.