We visited Trengwainton gardens this August and found a garden for all season, with a rich depth of planting evolving within the old estate walls.
I’ve always thought of Trengwainton as a spring garden, with a walled kitchen garden within, so we were pleasantly surprised to find the range of thoughtful sub tropical planting within its immaculate environs, rising to a terrace with fabulous views all the way from Penzance to The Lizard.
Our visit to Trengwaiton
Walking towards the entrance to a garden is always a moment full of the anticipation for the day and as we walked down into the garden, the chimney stacks of the Gardener’s cottage, just glimpsed through the trees gave a hint and a promise of special things to come. Our first peep was full of the promise of a garden wearing light veil of history and voluptuous green planting established over the centuries.
There was a bubble of activity in the visitors centre set in one of the old gatehouses and nobody was sent upon their way until briefed on the journey about to unfold before them. Armed with a map we made our way down into the garden weaving around the first exotic plantings to find the Walled kitchen gardens.
The walled Gardens
We threaded through the arched gateway into the walled gardens where orderly rows of vegetables mingle, with sunflowers and annuals, well dressed scarecrows wittily commemorating women of history and the light evocative scent of sweet peas hangs in the air and found it to be a real treat.
I couldn’t help but imagine the countless generations of gardeners who had walked through those gateways to labour through their lives, with the old brick walls and maybe aspire to the cottage that looked so perfect, set within the beds of Dahlias and Bananas.
We finally left the confines of the walled gardens and made our way down towards the terrace under the soaring canopy of trees that parted here and there to allow shafts of sunlight to illuminate the bright blue Hydrangeas below.
Our route took us passed ponds and sudden clearings filled with Tree ferns, before we emerged on to the Terrace. We stopped to admire the magnificent house of course as we crossed the lawns well who wouldn’t?
Our first stop on the terrace was to peer again into the depths of the Ha Ha that the Horse trial used to jump each year and the ditch looked even more formidable than ever I can report!
The terrace and view
The terrace was broad and elegantly dressed with white Gazebos set at intervals along the way and all beautiful floored with worn slate paving arranged to enjoy the magnificent views across Mounts Bay to The Lizard.
We walked to the end of the terrace, with a steady crunch of gravel to sit for a while in the far corner and remember those halcyon days of galloping cross the fields to jump the Ha Ha until the smell of a visitor’s pipe drove us back along the way in search of a Cream tea.
No garden visit could be complete without the quintessential cream tea if you’re in Cornwall and Trengwainton Tea Rooms offers a magnificent one with light fluffy scones, delicious jam and more than enough cream, all served by smart ladies in bright red striped jerseys. There was a yummy looking selection of cakes on offer too of course but somehow I was convinced a Cream tea was the thing to finish the day!
We sat in the little gravel terrace for a while with the gentle hubbub of conversations ebbing and flowing around us, to contemplate our day and carefully divide the scones pour the tea from a pot in the same time honoured ritual that marks garden visits up and down the country. Should you feel tempted by a Cream Tea that is possible because the tea rooms open off of the car park outside of the gardens.
Entrée for Trengwainton Gardens
We paid £17.50* for garden entry, plus £12.50* for a cream tea for two when we visited Trengwainton Gardens.
For more information from teh National Trust website about visiting Trengwainton Gardens click here
Are there more gardens to see around Penzance?