Arundel Castle in West Sussex has recently reopened its gardens and parts of its exterior to visitors, offering the experience of August in full bloom. Visitors exploring the gardens this month can take in a wide array of flowers, plants and produce, from English garden favourites to bright tropical colours.
One of the ‘stars of the show’ at this time of year is the bright display of dahlias. From the dinner plate sized blooms of the Babylon Series that appear almost neon in colour, to the Bishop of Llandaff with its contrasting black stem and scarlet petals, August is a peak time to see these striking flowers in all their glory.
In the Tropical Borders, exotic-looking plants set an eye-catching scene. The Ensete Maurelli, also known as the Red Abyssinian Banana, spreads its huge foliage across the borders while Flower Power Canna Lilies, in bright crimson, add to the tropical feel.
Head gardener Martin Duncan said: “We have an abundance of wonderful plants thriving in the gardens this August, and plenty of bees and butterflies doing very well alongside them!
“Our displays of Salvias are particularly resplendent at the moment, keep an eye out for the dainty Hot Lips or the dreamy blue Salvia uliginosa.
“One top tip for our visitors to the gardens is to try and arrive early, book the 10am to 11.30am slots online and visit when the gardens are less busy. For the lucky few who venture out in the mornings, the gardens feel almost private, like wandering into a secret garden all of your own.
“Our gardens team spent the last few months hard at work in the hopes that these glorious gardens would be reopened for our visitors to enjoy, and we’re delighted that the work is paying off!”
Over 24 varieties of apple, including some local Sussex varieties, are ripening in the summer sun throughout the gardens, as are several varieties of pear. The newly unveiled Water Gardens are tranquil with lovely flowering water lilies. In the Wild Flower Garden there’s a display of annual wildflowers such as borage, mustard and cornflowers, while the English Herbaceous Borders are full of pastel colours. The Stumpery, home to the upturned estate stumps of ancient trees, is looking quirkier than ever as August’s display is in its full glory.
Over in the Organic Kitchen Garden, visitors can see plants in the brassica family, such as cabbages and kales, as well as a large assortment of herbs including lavender, rosemary, thyme, sage and a variety of mints. Sunflowers are also thriving.
Arundel Castle reopened its gardens to visitors on 08 July and its interior on Wednesday 05 August. All tickets must be pre-booked online. Special ticket prices have been launched, £10 for an adult Gardens-only ticket or £15 for the Castle and Gardens. Children’s tickets are just £5 and children under five years go free. The Castle is open Tuesday-Sunday from 05 August as well as the Bank Holiday Monday.
Arundel Castle has been certified as ‘Good to Go’ by VisitEngland. For more information or to book tickets please visit: arundelcastle.org