K is for Kiftsgate Court Gardens

This is a post from a year ago with an update. I was short on ideas for the letter K and this beautiful garden is worth a re-visit.

Kiftsgate is located across the road from Hidcote Garden in the Cotswolds. We got some good exercise when we decided to just stroll over to Kiftsgate Gardens from Hidcote Garden not knowing what the parking situation would be at Kiftsgate. Well…they do have a nice parking area that is free for your information if you decide to visit but we had a goal to walk a lot in England and this day afforded a couple miles towards that goal.

Day 4 Gardens 081The story of Kiftsgate is the story of three generations of women gardeners: Heather Muir, Diany Binny and Anne Chambers. Each in her unique way has contributed throughout almost a century to making Kiftsgate the world renowned garden that visitors and gardeners alike have grown to know and love.Day 4 Gardens 087Heather Muir created the garden at Kiftsgate, which up until 1920 had consisted of a paved formal garden in front of the portico, with a field and wooded banks beyond. Heather was helped and inspired by her lifelong friend Lawrence Johnston of Hidcote Manor. She decided that the garden would develop organically as she was inspired, rather than planning everything on paper. This has given the garden a distinctly feminine feel, almost in direct contrast to the more masculine lines being employed by Johnston at Hidcote. By 1930 the steep banks were tackled and the steps to the lower garden were put in place, along with the delightful summerhouse taking advantage of the views to the west.

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Day 4 Gardens 088From the mid fifties Diany Binny continued to add to the garden by creating the semi-circular pool in the lower garden. She also commissioned two sculptures and began to open the garden on a regular basis.Day 4 Gardens 119The white sunk garden was also redesigned by her to incorporate a small pool and a well head fountain. Diany was an important figure in the development of Kiftsgate by opening the garden to the public and maintaining the tradition of continuity.

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Day 4 Gardens 092One of Anne Chambers finest accomplishments is the addition of the new water garden that was once the tennis court. This area is now an oasis of calm, where fine white stepping stones give the illusion of floating over the black pool below, leading to a grass island at the centre. To the far end, a double row of gilded bronze philodendron leaves sway gently under a cascade of running water surrounded by a curtain of yew hedging.

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Day 4 Gardens 125Taking up half the space on one side of the Rose Border is Rosa filipes ‘Kiftsgate’. The vigour shown by this rose, which we claim to be the largest in England, produces huge growth each year and three trees have been smothered by its spreading habit. In early to mid July it is a remarkable sight when it is covered in panicles of white blooms and resembles a cascading waterfall amongst the trees.

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Day 4 Gardens 090The view is magnificent from the swimming pool lawn. In one direction the distant hills of Malvern can be seen beyond the Vale of Evesham whilst looking back up the Banks a fine view of the house can allow oneself to imagine being in a Mediterranean setting.

Day 4 Gardens 115After we strolled through the upper gardens we made our way down to the lower garden and semi circular pool.

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Day 4 Gardens 121In one of the recent Father Brown episodes we watched this part of Kiftsgate Gardens was featured in one of the scenes.

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We had a few fast moving showers while we were at this garden but found good spots out of the rain to wait while the showers passed. There is a nice tea room available right on the grounds. You are never too far from a tea room in the Cotswolds.

All words in italics are from the Kiftsgate web page and not my own words.

Linking up to ABC Wednesday started by Mrs. Nesbitt and now administrated by Roger and the ABC team!

A little something extra today if you click over to Mennonite Girls Can Cook I have a recipe up for Mexican Corn Soup.

18 thoughts on “K is for Kiftsgate Court Gardens

  1. Wow how wonderful…. it reminds me of a trip i took in the summer of 2014 to Germany, Potsdam to be precise. Realy wonderful.

    Have a nice abc-week / day

    ♫ Mel☺dy ♫ (abc-w-team)

  2. Beautiful gardens and terrific pictures, I’ve never been to the Cotswolds,
    I’m ashamed to say !
    But surely will after reading this,
    thanks for sharing,
    best wishes,
    Di,
    ABCW team.

  3. Amazing gardens showing just what can be accomplished when someone ( 3 someones ) begin a labor of love and continue it throughout their lives.

    I loved the blue tables in the courtyard and the blue door. Can you tell I like blue ?

    As I was reading your re-post I was thinking how much the pictures reminded me of one of our favorite shows ‘Father brown’ and a few sentences later I knew why !

  4. Awesome photos of a beautiful place. Next time I visit England, it will have to be on the must see list. (Now I’m trying to remember which Father Brown episode featured this spot)

  5. Thanks for the wonderful tour of Kiftsgate Garden. We visited the Cotswolds many years ago and loved it, but we never saw anything like Kiftsgate Mary H

  6. What a beautiful place to visit, so much work, thoughtfulness in planning I am sure. thanks for the mexican corn soup recipe., it’s that time of year for lots of soup.
    Have a blessed week,
    Sue

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