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Acres of spectacular summer splendour

Author: Steven Shaw Published: 1st April 2009 14:24

To ensure that Poole-based Compton Acres remains at the forefront of the UK's leading garden attractions, spring planting is now well underway with the horticultural team promising the most "spectacular displays in decades."

Roger Lane. Italian Garden - Compton Acres - AboutMyArea - PooleRoger Lane. Italian Garden - Compton Acres

Following months of round the clock planning, planting and preparation, the historic grade II listed attraction will offer visitors vibrant colour at every twist and turn of its unique 10-acre landscape throughout the year.

In the acclaimed Italian Garden, the ornamental pool will be bordered with red hot begonias bursting with Mediterranean warmth from May to September. Surrounding beds will be edged with silver cineraria whilst the half circle pool will be enclosed by yellow dahlias with stunning black leaves.

Hidden at the bottom of the Wooded Valley's dramatic winding pathways and tumbling waterfalls, a new addition, the Bog Garden, will provide an informal escape with its wild and lush foliage.

New plantings here include ornamental reeds and rushes alongside bright primulas. A nearby Brazillian Gunnera is set to dwarf all that surrounds with its magnificent rhubarb-like leaves capable of growing up to 6 feet wide.

Providing a relaxing retreat with its far reaching views of Poole Bay, Sandbanks and Brownsea Island, the Harbour View Cafe will be flooded with the warm golden and mahogany glow of 1000 flowering Dwarf French Marigolds as orange Black Eyed Susan climbs nearby obelisks.

Peter Chatterton. spring cameilia at Compton AcresPeter Chatterton. Spring cameilia

Peter Chatterton. Prunus cerasirera at Compton AcresPeter Chatterton. Prunus cerasirera




Following successful trials, the dramatic, eye-catching Japanese Iris is a new addition in the Japanese Garden. On the hairpin bend leading away from the Japanese garden more alliums are being planted, these will blossom in late summer into spectacular round violet purple flowers on long stems which resemble fireworks frozen in mid-explosion.

Compton Acres owner, Bernard Merna, says:

"We are committed to improving the features at Compton Acres by maintaining and developing all areas of the grounds. The new plantings will enhance the differences between each garden so people can enjoy each of them in isolation. The gardens will have a greater variety of planting therefore making these historic gardens a richer and more enjoyable experience."

Located in Canford Cliffs between the Dorset seaside centre of Bournemouth and Poole, Compton Acres is close to Sandbanks, which is signposted from the A338 and A35 (follow the brown tourist signs), and offers plenty of  free coach parking on site.

Entry fee's - adults £6.95, concessions £6.45, children, 5-15 years £3.95, under 4's go free. Special rates for concessions and groups of 15 or more.

To find out about new group packages and coach driver incentives for 2009 call 01202 700778.

About Compton Acres

A Grade II listed garden, Compton Acres in Canford Cliffs, Dorset, is one of the finest privately owned gardens in the south with a unique 10-acre landscape of themed gardens, including the Italian and Japanese, offering views of Poole Harbour, Brownsea Island and the Purbecks. 

Established in 1920 by Mr Thomas William Simpson, the aim was to create a series of gardens to embody the vision of his worldwide travels and interest in horticulture. Thousands of tons of stone, rock, and top quality soil were gathered from far and wide.  Rare plants, many of them sub-tropical, together with iron gates, bronze and marble statutory, fountains, and lanterns were sought from around the world.  Such was Mr Simpson's passion for authenticity, stones and ornaments in the Japanese garden were shipped from Japan.  The garden itself was designed and built by a Japanese architect and workmen, justifying its claim to be among the very few genuine Japanese gardens in Europe.

Each garden has an individual landscape style hosting different growing conditions for a wide range of ornamental plants and as a result, visitors encounter a series of separate experiences.

Article - Liz Lean PR Ltd

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