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Open Gardens: 10am–4.30pm; daily; all year. Snowdrops every weekend in February - see website.


Partner Garden
Free access for RHS members at selected times

Forde Abbey
TA20 4LU

4 miles south-east of Chard.

30 acres (12.1ha)

01460 221290

Visit website


Non-member adult £10 house and gardens.

RHS members

Free access applies Fris throughout open period (excluding special events).


  • Baby changing facilities
  • Café
  • Children's activities
  • Disabled access
  • Disabled facilities
  • Dogs welcome
  • Gift shop
  • Group rates
  • Parking
  • Picnics allowed
  • Plants for sale
  • Restaurant
  • Toilets


  • Arboretum
  • Autumn colour
  • Bog garden
  • Colour themed borders
  • Gravel garden
  • Herbaceous border
  • Pond or lake
  • Rock garden
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Wildlife planting and features
  • Winter garden
  • Woodland

About the garden

Owned by
Mrs S. Kennard

The gardens of Forde Abbey surround the 12th century former Cistercian Monastery, a rambling private home since 1650, part Jacobean and part Gothic. They extend over 30 informal acres (12ha), with plants of interest and beauty throughout the year, set off by ancient and mellowed stone walls. Trees survive from 1700, although much has been planted in recent years: rhododendrons, azaleas, acers, magnolias, irises, Meconopsis and candelabra primulas. But there are also mature Victorian conifers (Sequoia sempervirens and Calocedrus decurrens), lakes, ponds, streams, cascades, bogs and such oddities as a beech house and the highest powered fountain in England. A new winter garden is under development. Please note that the tea-room, gift shop and plant centre are closed from November to February.

Plants of special interest

  • Agapanthus
  • Alliums
  • Alpines
  • Asters
  • Autumn bulbs
  • Bluebells
  • Camellias
  • Clematis
  • Conifers
  • Cornus (for winter stems or spring bracts)
  • Daffodils
  • Dahlias
  • Ferns
  • Fruit bushes/trees
  • Grasses
  • Heathers
  • Hellebores
  • Hemerocallis
  • Hostas
  • Irises
  • Lilies
  • Magnolias
  • Maple
  • Meconopsis
  • Orchids
  • Primulas
  • Rhododendrons/azaleas
  • Roses
  • Shade-loving plants
  • Snowdrops
  • Spring bulbs
  • Sweet peas
  • Topiary
  • Vegetables
  • Wildflowers
  • Wisteria

Get involved

We're a UK charity established to share the best in gardening. We want to enrich everyone's life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.