165. How Does Your Garden Grow? Chawton House Library & Gardens

Chawton House Library
Chawton House Library is an internationally respected research and learning centre for the study of early women’s writing from 1600 to 1830. Access to the library’s unique collection is for the benefit of scholars and the general public alike. Set in the quintessentially English manor house that once belonged to Jane Austen’s brother, Edward; the library, house and gardens - plus an always fascinating calendar of events - make Chawton House Library a very special and memorable place to visit and enjoy.
— chawtonhouse.org
Chawton House Library
Chawton House Library
Chawton House Library
Chewton House Library kitchen

Yesterday I visited Chawton House Library with my good chum Tanya (who’s birthday it is today if you want to wish her a happy birthday). 

The garden is managed by Andrew Bentley, a wonderfully enthusiastic gentleman who's passion and knowledge is immediently apparent when you meet him. We were given an informal tour of the garden by Andrews’ wife, who’s knowledgable of the gardens was insightful and inspired. 

Chawton House Library Gardens

The Gardens include: a terrace (inspired by Edwin Lutyens), English memorial rose garden, a walled garden containing fruit, vegetables, herbs & flowers, a Wilderness with paths to explore, a Fernery and lawns with a Ha-Ha.

Chawton House Library Garden
Chawton House Library Garden
Chawton House Library & Gardens

Chawton House is registered as an organic producer with the Soil Association, with everything grown being used by the Library with any surplus being sold locally in aid of the charity.

Roses
Chawton House Library & Gardens
Chawton House Library & Gardens
Chawton House Library Garden

The garden highlight for me was Andrew's recently completed project that ties the garden to the house perfectly. Elizabeth Blackwell Herb Garden links to Blackwell’s 2-volume Curious Herbal work is held in the Chawton House Library collection. Elizabeth was a pioneering mid eighteenth-century herbalist and this herb garden is planted in 4 sections, each planted withherbs that were described by Elizabeth to be used for the treatment of different parts of the body:  Head, Chest, Skin and Digestion. 

Chawton House Library
 Chawton House Library & Gardens
Tearoom at Chawton House Library

And finally, because Gemma taunts me with amazing recipes every week, here's some of the cakes from the tearoom...

Tearoom at Chawton House Library
Tearoom at Chawton House Library

This is an undiscovered gem of a house and gardens in Hampshire which I cannot recommend enough. Can you believe entry is £7 - and that gives you unlimited entry for the rest of the year? Visit and enjoy people, visit and enjoy!

 

Thanks to everyone who joined in last week, some faves include: Summer wild flowers, allotment community, Thames barrier park, le jardin potager & a spot of floral faffing.

Have a great weekend everyone!