Top 100 UK gardens: Highdown gardens full tour and review


Deep in the West Sussex countryside, Highdown gardens has an enormous amount of horticultural history attached to it and rightly so. Originally a working chalk quarry it was purchased by Sir Frederick Stern in 1909 who, against the advice of the contemporary leading horticulturists created what would have been a world class garden in the wonderful countryside of what is now the South Downs national park. 

Groundbreaking in his attempt to grow anything he could get his hands in his chalky soils, he managed to prove many of those around him wrong. Over the years he published several books on chalk gardens, on peonies and snowdrops and part-funding expeditions to China to bring back yet more exotic plants to try out at Highdown. He was rewarded the Royal Horticultural Society's Victoria Medal and became vice president of said organisation. He was chairman of the John Innes Horticultural Institute from 1947 to 1961 and vice-president and treasurer of the Linnean Society from 1941 to 1958.[4] Stern was knighted in 1956 for his services to horticulture

Do the gardens reflect this grand history? Well why not join English Horticulturist Simon and Lorna as they visit this historic site. If you would like to ask us a question then you are very welcome to leave a message in the comments section. Also consider supporting our chanel by clicking the 'LIKE' and 'SUBSCRIBE' buttons.