Sunday, 16 October 2016

Iford Manor - the Peto Garden

Many gardens close at the end of September, so I decided to visit a few gardens before the end of the season, starting with a second visit to Highgrove House which was as interesting as the first visit. Although being late season rather than May, when I last visited, the Salvias and dahlias were looking at their best. Photography isn't allowed at Highgrove, so apart from saying how much I enjoyed the visit, I'll also say that I was interested to see the small flowered Streptocarpus growing outside in large pots, I'll certainly be doing that next year.
Having spent the morning at Highgrove, we travelled south to Iford Manor which is just south west of Bradford on Avon. The Grade 1 Italianate-style garden is famous for its tranquil beauty and was the home of architect and designer Harold Peto from 1899-1933. The garden is set on a hillside behind the impressive house, he has designed walkways and placed statues around the garden making it a wonderful place to visit.
 On arrival, the first thing to impress apart from the beauty of the house is the statue of Britannia on the bridge over the river
 Above Iford Manor, and below the steps beside the house taking the visitor up into the garden
 or alternatively, one can take the right turn and walk towards the Cloisters built by Peto in 1914, partly to house his remaining antique fragments and partly as a historical reference to the Cloisters which had once existed on the Conservatory lawn.
 Above a balcony overlooking the valley, and below the inside of the Cloisters

 from there we walked through the woods and came across the King Edward VII Column
 and here's one of the walkways
and here's the Great Terrace
 with lovely plantings, including the Verbena 'lollipop' seen below
 Here's a view of a statue through the colonnade

 Here's a view of the terrace looking towards the Garden Room

 Here are two views of the bronze wolf with Romulus and Remus made for Peto by Angelis of Naples from a mould taken from the original in the Capital museum in Rome.
 from there we went to the Japanese Garden
and then onto the Blue Pool
with this statue at one end
 and this Romanesque bas-relief of a woman riding a lion. The yew hedges are clipped into the shape of the crest of the Chigi family of Siena as a memorial to the present owner's grandmother who was a member of that family.
 Below a small courtyard with huge salvia Amistad just visible
 Looking up towards the Great terrace.
Iford Manor provides an excellent day out, it's open on Sunday afternoons during October.

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