Surprisingly Wisley is my favorite garden in England

Written by Doug Oster on .

blog wisley rock garden overall blurThe Rock Garden at Wisley is unparallelled. Photos by Doug Oster

Before I arrived in England I never heard of Wisley Gardens. Even though I saw the Chelsea Flower Show, Hampton Court and Kew Gardens, seeing Wisley was almost a religious experience.

This is a garden for the trowel and shovel set, gardeners who spend there days digging, weeding, planning and more.

We only had a few hours to explore these pristine gardens, but each area offered something different.

When I got lost among the winding trails filled with rhododenrons, azaleas and other plants of Battleston Hill East I ran into two of the gardeners who tend to this expansive and remarkable woodland garden. I had walked for a half hour in awe of the plants in their prime. "Do they have anything like this in the states, they asked. I paused for a second and simply said, "no, there's nothing like this anywhere."

I hate leaving a garden like Wisley without seeing everything, but sometimes the travel gods require a return trip.

Someday I'll be back here and will spend the entire day, at my leisure discovering the nuances of this wonderful garden ... I can't wait!

blog mallard windsor useFor the first time we were greeted with England's famous wet weather. I loved it, this mallard did too.

blog cammasia and magnoliaOne of the beautiful combinations were this pink magnolia blooming among purple cammasia.

blog wisley heatherWisley houses the national collection of heather plants.

blog wisley benchI walked to the very edges of the garden to explore the Plants for Bugs exhibit I saw this old bench sitting among English bluebells. The bench looks out towards a fast moving creek.

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