A summer visit to Beth Chatto’s gravel garden

Beth Chatto Gardens are featured on Gransnet Local Colchester http://bit.ly/VKxUe7 . We would love your reviews.


Situated in the not-so-pretty village of Elmstead Market, between the Essex towns of Colchester and Clacton, Beth Chatto’s marvellous garden is a great day out. The gravel garden alone, which is just a part of what is on offer, is a morning’s entertainment in itself.

Beth, now aged 90, began the garden with her husband in 1960. They owned a fruit farm nearby and started the garden on what they called “wasteland”. Beth was a flower arranger and speaker at that point and began with an interest in unusual plants. She built up a collection which led to the nursery in 1967 and then began writing books, including The Dry Garden, The Damp Garden, Plant Portraits  and The Green Tapestry.

The gravel garden is not irrigated; indeed Beth says that the original idea was an experiment to see what can be done on an unpromising former car park. Miraculously, you…

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