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Our five favourite gardens to visit this summer

Our five favourite gardens to visit this summer

Summer is on the way, with the sound of lawnmowers whirring all around and gardeners rolling up their sleeves, sowing seeds and planting summer beds.  It's the perfect time to celebrate our great British gardens - and maybe pick up a few tips for our own outdoor spaces, too.

With so many amazing gardens to choose from, we found it hard to decide on our five favourites!  Here's our final shortlist of gardens we recommend visiting this summer...

Starting in the Scilly Isles, the stunning sub-tropical Tresco Abbey Gardens has been described as "Kew Gardens without the glass".  Here, you'll find thousands of plants flourishing from all round the world.  Explore the unusual Valhalla Museum, featuring figureheads from shipwrecks off the islands' coasts.  And take your time to discover the wealth of hidden treasures and open spaces in this luxuriant garden (pictured below).

Three boys walking away along a path with large tropical plants and trees all around in Tresco Abbey Gardens

The Royal Horticultural Society is, of course, the go to place for dedicated gardeners.  Its flagship RHS Garden at Wisley, Surrey, houses one of the largest plant collections in the world.  You can stroll round a huge number of fantastic sights including the Glasshouse and Exotic, Walled and Rock Gardens.  And watch out for the garden's brand new 75 metre Wisteria Walk and the Battleston Hill in fabulous full spring bloom.

No gardening shortlist would be complete without an appearance by the National Trust and we've chosen the lovely Hidcote Manor Garden in Gloucestershire (main picture and below).  Walking through this Arts and Crafts garden, you'll discover a carefully cultivated and intricately designed series of outdoor rooms.  These become less formal as you move away from Lawrence Johnston's manor house.  You can even play tennis with period wooden rackets!

Long green lawn with lots of plants in borders each side and stone steps leading to another lawn surrounded by low hedges and a stone wall, with a couple sitting on a bench in the distance and an enormous tree overshadowing them

A relative newcomer is the National Botanic Garden of Wales, which opened in May 2000.  Its enormous range of plant species and glorious location in 500 acres of Camarthen countryside makes it a must see for gardeners and non-gardeners alike.  Admire the world's largest single span glasshouse and enjoy the outdoor and indoor art.  And you can learn a huge amount about plant evolution and research from their experts!

Our final top five place goes to the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh, just one mile from the city centre.  The garden has an enormous selection of trees and shrubs, from giant redwoods to wild origin Chinese plants.  Its Living Collection also contains some of the world's rarest plants.  Don't forget to visit the Victorian Temperate Palm House - the tallest in Britain - and explore the RBGE's three linked gardens at Benmore, Dawyck and Logan.

What's your favourite garden - is it on our shortlist?  If not, please let us know in the comments below.  And if you do visit any of our recommended gardens this summer, it would be great to hear your thoughts too!

Lastly, if you're looking for unusual gardening gifts or nature lovers' gifts, you'll find plenty of inspiration in Peach Perfect's Garden Collection.  In the meantime, here are a few suggestions to help you celebrate your special friends' special occasions.

           

Allotment Essentials Kit in biodegradable birch tray   

 Butterfly Habitat with folding feeding tray

Handcrafted beach huts style Bird House

And our range of tuneful Woodstock wind chimes make great gifts for gardeners who have everything ...

Woodstock Irish Blessing windchime with metal tubes and a light wooden tag engraved with the blessing hanging below the windchime

This one's our Irish Blessing Chime (which is also a perfect wedding present!)

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