Elegant and inventive, the gardens at Kilver Cour
t have been created around the original buildings and offer a masterclass in how to use clever planting and structural features to provide interest and beauty all year round.
The gardens lie in a setting of fields, valleys and wooded hills, just outside the historic market town of Shepton Mallet, and at this time of year revel in the sepia tones of seed heads, fading foliage, grasses, berries and show-stopping Acers.
Originally designed and landscaped as a place of relaxation and respite for mill workers, the gardens at Kilver Court have a sound structure with Yew tree hedges, rockery and a patchwork of evergreens
Plants and trees display a bold mix of colours from rich red and burnt orange to mustard yellow and bold green. The Acer palmatum dissectum ‘Seiryu’ is always a star
, and alongside the fiery foliage of the Acer ‘Garnet’ and Acer ‘Orange Dream’, transforms the gardens.
Adding to the backdrop of colourful trees, the ancient Ginkgo biloba
has buttery yellow leaves and the kaleidoscope of colour from the Cornus kousa ‘chinensis’
complete the picture.
Rather than putting the garden to bed for the winter, it is cut back in early spring for compost and used as mulch when ready. The structure of the plants, seed heads and red Cornus stems can be enjoyed throughout the winter
. Nooks and crannies are left for bugs and hibernators and seed heads for over-wintering insects and birds.
Visitors can warm up with a bowl of soup and some homemade cake in the Harlequin Café and Pantry restaurant.