Last week we had a very rare day off to visit Arundel Castle for the medieval tournament (which was fantastic) but as well as watching the most magnificent jousting and sword fighting, we also had a very lovely tour of the gardens. We have already spoken about the inspired allium and lavender planting combination that we spotted in the cutting garden, but today we are looking at a few of the structure in the Arundel Castle Gardens…
First up is this wonderful green oak arch / walkway that features in the Collector Earl’s Garden, which is beautifully simple, yet also a very accomplished piece of timber structuring.
Framing views, the archway and dome provide both focal points and a touch of shade in the otherwise exposed Italianate styled garden. This is a key top tip for spaces of any size – if the eye sees everything at once then a space can feel uninteresting or even a great deal smaller than it actually is. By framing views and breaking up the expanse you create increased interest in any space, whilst also having the opportunity to direct a focus in any direction you choose, such as towards a sculpture or even the view beyond.
The timber structures in the space continued with a quite incredible wooden folly, decorated with antlers.
And also the fantastic Oberon’s Palace, which featured fountains and sculptures and was surrounded with large terracotta pots filled with cool coloured Agapanthus.
But the structures continued into the cutting and edible gardens too, with the imposing green oak arched walkway being reflected in an apple archway, which not only provided a productive architectural element to the second part of the gardens but visually tied these very different spaces together.
Covered with (we think) Ashmead’s Kernel, the apple archway also allowed framed views of the historical buildings of Arundel…
The Arundel Castle Gardens are all accessible within the entry level ticket and, in our opinion, are one of the huge highlights. There is a stunning amount of variety, and at this time of the year, they are also abundant with flowers and fruits. Plus, the Head Gardener and team are out and about – and were very pleased to impart their knowledge of the space and the gardens to the visitors. We were even given a small bunch of sweet peas.
A wonderful gem of an attraction in Sussex – the Arundel Castle Gardens are beautiful, slightly bonkers and varied. Which in our book is quite a winning combination.
(photos by claire potter)