It’s rare to find two spectacular gardens as close together as Kiftsgate and Hidcote Manor Gardens, but Heather Muir, who began work on the Kiftsgate gardens in 1920, was a close friend of Major Lawrence Johnston, the creator of Hidcote. Kiftsgate benefited from Johnston’s plant-hunting expeditions to Japan and China. Kiftsgate sits atop the Cotswold Hills, and from the terrace there are spectacular views to the Malvern Hills. A splendid rose, ‘Frühlingsgold’, which blooms magnificently in June, guards the garden’s edge. In springtime the White Sunk Garden is a mass of flowering bulbs. Among the white roses is Rosa sericea, ‘Heather Muir’, a single, early-flowering shrub that grows up to 12 feet in height. But the glory of the rose border is the striking Rosa filipes ‘Kiftsgate’, a white rose which, when last measured, was 80 feet by 90 feet with a height of 50 feet.
Facilities – at a glance
Suitable for all child ages
- Suitable for children of all ages
- Parking onsite
- Opening Times: Open Apr & Sep, Sun, Mon & Wed 2-6; May-Jul, Sat-Wed 12-6; Aug Sat-Wed 2-6
Also in the area
About the area
Gloucestershire is home to a variety of landscapes. The Cotswolds, a region of gentle hills, valleys and gem-like villages, roll through the county. To their west is the Severn Plain, watered by Britain’s longest river, and characterised by orchards and farms marked out by hedgerows that blaze with mayflower in the spring, and beyond the Severn are the Forest of Dean and the Wye Valley.
Throughout the county you are never far away from the past. Neolithic burial chambers are widespread, and so too are the remains of Roman villas, many of which retain the fine mosaic work produced by Cirencester workshops. There are several examples of Saxon building, while in the Stroud valleys abandoned mills and canals are the mark left by the Industrial Revolution. Gloucestershire has always been known for its abbeys, but most of them have disappeared or lie in ruins. However, few counties can equal the churches that remain here. These are many and diverse, from the ‘wool’ churches in Chipping Campden and Northleach, to the cathedral at Gloucester, the abbey church at Tewkesbury or remote St Mary’s, standing alone near Dymock.
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