Green Island Gardens


Partner Garden
Free access for RHS members at selected times

Park Road
Ardleigh
Colchester
Essex
CO7 7SP

From Ardleigh village centre, take B1029 towards Gt Bromley. Park Rd is on the right after level crossing.

20 acres

Tel
01206 230455

Visit website

Opening Hours

16 Jan–14 Dec. 10am–4pm, Tue–Sat, Jan, Nov and Dec. 10am–4pm, Tue–Sat and 11am–4pm, Sun, Feb and Mar. 10am–5pm, Tue–Sat and 11am–4pm, Sun and Bank Hols, Apr–Oct.

Admission

Please see website for admission prices.

RHS members

Free access (member 1 only for joint memberships) applies Tue–Sat until 15 Apr. Wed only 16 Apr–31 Oct. Tue–Sat, 1 Nov–13 Dec.

Facilities

  • Assistance dogs only
  • Accessible facilities
  • Accessible garden
  • Baby changing facilities
  • Children’s play area
  • Children's activities
  • Group rates
  • Parking
  • Picnic area
  • Plant sales
  • Refreshments
  • Toilets

Features

  • Autumn colour
  • Gravel garden
  • National Plant Collections
  • Pond or lake
  • Woodland

About the garden

Owned by
Fiona Edmond/Andy Edmond

Designed by owner Fiona Edmond, Green Island Gardens have been carved out among woodland destroyed in the 1987 Great Storm and now include a terrace, large island mixed beds, seaside, Japanese, gravel and water gardens, as well as extensive woodland gardens and two National collections of Hamamelis and autumn-and-winter-flowering Camellias.

The gardens are designed to look good all year round. Highlights include hamamelis and snowdrops in January and February, camellias, trilliums and woodlanders in March and April, along with bluebells and azaleas in May. Giant tree lilies delight from July to August, and the spectacular autumn colour is provided by a collection of acers, liquidambars, fothergillas, nyssas, stewartias and cotinus.

A range of unusual plants, many of borderline hardiness, thrive in the distinctive island microclimate. The gardens are wildlife friendly, and 2022 saw the opening of a new educational wildlife centre. Explore this garden area and find a variety of wildlife, birds, butterflies, moths, fungi and insects.

The tearoom serves homemade lunches, cakes and snacks. A large new terrace area is opening in 2023, extending the tearoom facilities. Group visits are welcome; the owner gives talks and presentations to horticultural groups and societies at the gardens. The nursery is small but packs in a variety of plants, many rare, that can all be seen growing in the gardens.

Plants of special interest

  • Alliums
  • Bluebells
  • Camellias
  • Cyclamen
  • Daffodils
  • Hellebores
  • Lilies
  • Maple
  • Primulas
  • Rhododendrons/azaleas
  • Snowdrops
  • Spring bulbs
  • Wisteria

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.