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WEST DEAN GARDENS

Partner Garden
Free access for RHS members at selected times

West Dean
Nr Chichester
PO18 0RX

6 miles north of Chichester on A286.

92 acres

Tel
01243 818318

Visit website

Opening Hours

Daily, 10.30am–4pm, winter; 10.30am–5pm, summer; 4 Jan–23 Dec.

Admission

Non-member adult £7.50 (winter), £11 (summer).

RHS members

Free access (Member 1 only) 4 Jan–28 Feb & 1 Oct–23 Dec.

Facilities

  • Accessible facilities
  • Accessible garden
  • Baby changing facilities
  • Dogs welcome
  • Free carer entry
  • Gift shop
  • Group rates
  • Parking
  • Picnic area
  • Plant sales
  • Refreshments
  • Toilets

Features

  • Arboretum
  • Autumn colour
  • Award winner
  • Children’s garden (not playground)
  • Colour themed borders
  • Cottage planting
  • Glasshouse (open to public)
  • Herbaceous border
  • Pond or lake
  • Prairie/naturalistic planting
  • Sculpture
  • Water garden
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Woodland

About the garden

Owned by
Edward James Foundation Ltd

West Dean Gardens welcomes visitors to a restored 92-acre award-winning garden that is internationally respected for both the quality and variety of horticultural practice. Explore the restored Walled Kitchen Garden, laid out in a classic Victorian design and see the splendid 13 Victorian glasshouses designed by Foster & Pearson. These are some of the few working glasshouses in the UK.        

Outside are orderly rows of cabbage, carrots, leeks, lettuce and beetroot, alongside herbaceous borders in rich reds, oranges and yellows. The kitchen garden has more than one mile of walls covered in trained espalier fruit trees and a fruit garden with 100 apple varieties. 

Beyond the walled garden, the 35-acre ornamental grounds, where more than 500,000 spring bulbs have been naturalised, act as a foil to the many heritage features. These include a 300-foot Edwardian Pergola constructed in 1912 and designed by Harold Peto, and the award-winning Sunken Garden where rich planting provides intimacy and sense of shelter, in contrast to the spaciousness of the surrounding lawns.        

The Spring Garden features flintwork bridges criss-crossing the River Lavant, a rustic summerhouse with moss walls, seaweed decorations, heather ceiling and thatched roof and a laburnum and ivy tunnel. A stroll to St. Roche’s Arboretum reveals an extensive tree collection including Californian Redwoods, and offers a circular two-and-a-half-mile walk with beautiful panoramic views of the South Downs.     

The Visitor Centre houses an imaginative gift shop, plant sales area and a licensed restaurant, which uses produce grown in the gardens. Dogs on short leads are welcome.

Plants of special interest

  • Agapanthus
  • Alliums
  • Alpines
  • Asters
  • Autumn bulbs
  • Begonias
  • Bluebells
  • Cacti & succulents
  • Camellias
  • Chrysanthemums
  • Clematis
  • Conifers
  • Cornus (for winter stems or spring bracts)
  • Cut flowers
  • Cyclamen
  • Daffodils
  • Dahlias
  • Delphiniums
  • Ferns
  • Fruit blossom
  • Fruit bushes/trees
  • Fuchsias
  • Grasses
  • Hellebores
  • Herbs
  • Hostas
  • Irises
  • Laburnum
  • Lavender
  • Lilies
  • Magnolias
  • Orchids
  • Primulas
  • Rhododendrons/azaleas
  • Roses
  • Shade-loving plants
  • Snowdrops
  • Spring bulbs
  • Sweet peas
  • Topiary
  • Vegetables
  • Waterlilies
  • Wildflowers
  • 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.