Welcome to Topiary in the United Kingdom
This site aims to show the history of topiary and to give details and photographs of the major topiary gardens in all parts of the United Kingdom such as Levens Hall, Hidcote Manor, Knightshayes, Packwood House and Great Dixter. It will also, eventually provide a comprehensive database of specimens of topiary in other gardens including smaller public and some private ones. Once you have been bitten by the topiary bug you probably won’t be able to give it up! Topiary itself has been popular since the days of ancient Rome and, if the tomb paintings of ancient Egypt are to be taken literally, even before. The earliest literary description of topiary (the art of clipping trees and bushes into geometric or whimsical shapes) comes from the Roman Consul Pliny the Elder (AD 62-110) writing about his garden in Tuscany, Italy. It seems that its immediate popularity was ensured as the gardener who first introduced it to the Romans, Cneius Matius, was a close friend of Julius Caesar and the Emperor Augustus. It is more than likely that the Romans introduced topiary into Great Britain and it has had a chequered history ever since. You can find a short history of topiary here.
Topiary in the United Kingdom is created by Anthony Blagg, who lives in Worcestershire with his wife, shears and continuously growing topiary collection.
Have you seen something that has caught your eye? We are always interested to hear of unusual topiary specimens from anywhere in the United Kingdom. Please send us an email, and perhaps a photograph, which could be published on the website. We give listings of topiary gardens in the UK and some gardens have their own page as well with an explanation of what to expect if you visit plus extensive photographs so that you can get a real flavour. New articles and photographs of topiary gardens included recently are Erddig, Bodysgallen Hall and Bodnant in North Wales, Birkheads Secret Gardens in Tyne and Wear, Castle Howard in Yorkshire, Tatton Park in Cheshire, Sizergh Castle in Cumbria and Warwick Castle in Warwickshire. There are also new photographs for Wightwick Manor near Wolverhampton. If you know the name of a garden but don’t know exactly where it is then try our Full Alphabetical List of Gardens. If you are interested in how to make your own topiary then visit the how to grow page. There are some quick tips and a link to Anthony’s e-book on How to Grow Topiary available on Amazon.Topiary has come into fashion and gone out again on a regular basis throughout history but it will still make a small garden look grand and a grand garden look, …well grander still. We also have a sister topiary site, Topiary Today for gardens outside the UK.
Interested in the history of Great Britain?
Then visit our other sister site www.britainunlimited.com about the lives of 250 of the Greatest Britons.
The United Kingdom too small for you? Topiary Today covers the rest of the world including some of those fantastic Italian gardens.