The New Winter Garden at Wakehurst

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew/Wakehurst


The Winter Garden at Wakehurst has been totally transformed into a world of colour and fragrance – perfectly designed to be set off by a wintery landscape - with shimmering bark, soft foliage and rich scents.
In early 2018 staff and volunteers redesigned and replanted a garden that had been in situ for 30 years. They weaved together 33,000 plants and secured mature birch trees with innovative invisible stakes.
The aim was to create a space that would gladden the heart on cold winter days. This was enabled by a legacy left to Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, of which Wakehurst if part.
Francis Annette, Garden Supervisor, won a competition within Kew to take up a place on a garden design course. Afterwards Francis put into action the skills he had learnt, by completely reimaging the 2,300 square metre space.
Francis imaginatively redesigned the area and with help of garden architects’ and plans were drawn up for the exact positioning of the beds, new paths and oak seating.
The planting composition is dynamic, contemporary and leaves a real ‘wow’ factor in its wake. 
There is no doubt the new winter landscape has the ability both to amaze and sooth in equal measure.

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