First impressions count for a lot, and your first view of the property is of the house itself, constructed in that beautiful mellow brickwork that is so characteristic of this part of Hampshire. You approach the car-park along a lane adorned with a mass of climbing roses carefully secured to a brick wall, and then park in what was/is evidently an orchard. Nice! The house is not open to visitors, but there is plenty to see in the gardens. Facilities include teashop, gift shop, toilets and plant sales area. Admission is free to NT members, but £8 for others.
The garden has a variety of different styles. Some of it is formal and "closely-cropped", but other bits are informal, verging on the wild. Throughout the garden there are lots of features to keep your interest - statues, obelisks, bridges, ponds, streams, and water features. The walled garden which would originally have been the house's kitchen garden is now maintained in "potager" style, with flowers interspersed with vegetables. Even the fruit-cages are highly ornamental as well as being functional. The owner is evidently very keen on topiary, and there are lots of items of this nature. I liked the water features best. Take a look at this...
At the top of the garden is this little fountain thing.
Water from the fountain flows down a narrow runnel between clipped Box hedges, towards the main potager garden. Note the line of brick-work you can see in the middle distance.
This is the line of brick-work... It provides a super frame through which to admire the main garden.
The main garden is divided into what is effectively a number of rooms, each with a different colour theme. Here's a glimpse of the blue room. Note the appropriately-coloured obelisks! In this shot you can see (amongst others) Lupins, Clematis, Nepeta (Catnip) and Alliums.
|Crimson-flowered Broad Beans|
In the course of the one afternoon I took over 300 photos. You'll be relieved to hear that I'm not going to include them all here! And of course many of them were rubbish. The sharp contrasts between light and shade on this hot sunny afternoon presented many challenges for the photographer. I'll just show you a small selection which will hopefully give you an impression of the atmosphere of the place. If you would like to see more of my photos of West Green House, follow this link: More photos.
|Golden Marjoram mixed with Roses and Rhubarb|
|I loved the use of locally-sourced Hazel boughs to construct deep raised beds for vegetables like these potatoes|
|The Peonies were probably the star attraction. Loads of them is lots of different colours.|
|Clematis - is it "Nellie Moser"?|
|Primula in the bog-garden area|
|The "Five Bridges" woodland walk, with ferns in profusion|
|Talking of bridges...|
|This was called the "Doric Temple"|
|Part of the garden is left wild. The bees love it!|
|The statuary aims to suit all tastes|
|I fancied one of these for growing Sweet Peas, but even the smallest one was £45|
|House-leek in the greenhouse. Not my sort of thing, but very impressive.|
|A great colour combination in the Pansies|
|Who knows what this is? Looks like a succuclent version of the Cabbage!|
|Interior of one of the greenhouses|
|Even the log-pile was neat. I like that!|
Oh, and one final thing to add - this little Coreopsis "Sunfire" plant came home with us as a souvenir of the visit!