Monthly Report

Visit Report: Glansevern & The Dingle

In the middle of a spell of unseasonably cold, wet and windy weather, around 50 stalwart members of Snitterfield Garden Club were blessed with a whole day of garden visiting in which umbrellas were not required!  The day trip took us to the scenic area of Welshpool, Powys and our destinations were Glansevern Hall Gardens, The Derwen Garden Centre and The Dingle Garden and Nursery.  


Arriving at 11am, the group spent a leisurely couple of hours exploring the delights of Glansevern, admiring the beautiful tinkling fountain at the head of the wisteria walk close to the imposing Hall, which was built in Greek Revival style by Sir Arthur Davies Owen at the turn of the 18th/19th Century. Complimenting the wisteria is an underplanting of alliums and, close by across the fine lawns, a newly-renovated Victoria Orangery leans on a characterful brick wall, itself giving shelter to a pair of wide, colourful herbaceous borders. All a feast for the eyes. 


Separated by hornbeam hedges and ornamental ironwork, the large, walled garden has been divided into compartments each with a different theme.  Roses feature heavily, with extravagant peonies and other varied herbaceous subjects and box topiary pieces filling the divisions. A collection of Acers with wild flower under-planting fill one section and places in which to sit, contemplate and listen to the birdsong are a thoughtful addition. 


Beyond these enclosed spaces, the garden broadens into woodland, with mown paths designed to lead past interesting, labelled specimens trees. Further afield, in the direction of the R. Severn which borders the estate, some members discovered the bird-hide on the river bank, approached by skirting a crop of sweet corn, newly-sprouted from the bare soil.


Woodland walks lead back past the Hall to the not-to-be-missed 4 acre lake, a great source of calm and beauty, with interesting under-planting on the banks shaded by yet more unusual trees, for which Glansevern is rightly noted.


Our lunch stop at The Derwen Garden Centre provided not only physical sustenance, but an opportunity to indulge in plant purchases at this very well laid out, extensive nursery.  The many maze-like Show Gardens provided planting ideas and inspiration to take away and emulate.


The final treat of the day was to visit The Dingle Garden & Nurseries, an intriguing mix of upper garden perched on the edge of a huge, amphitheatre-shaped garden with steadily descending paths winding through mixed plantings which give tantalising peeks of the beautiful lake and waterfall at its base. Acers are a particular feature and will give vibrant Autumn colour - reason to visit during another season.......


Nothing could prevent our members, who recognise a well-grown and well-priced plant when they see one, spending their last remaining minutes poring over the goodies for sale in the wonderful Nursery at The Dingle. Fortunately our Johnsons coach storage could  accommodate them all! A disastrous batch of recent weather provided one day free of rain, just for our trip, for which I, as organiser, will remain eternally grateful! No sooner had we boarded the coach for the return trip than the windscreen wipers went on, and stayed that way, but nothing daunted the pleasure and enthusiasm our members expressed at a day well-spent engrossed in our favourite pastime.


Gillie Waldron