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Nymans in bloom
2:14pm Thursday 24th May 2012 in In Profile
As high summer approaches nature is at its most colourful with flowers of all sizes and every shade bursting into blossom.
In England our national flower is the rose and nowhere will you be able to enjoy it at its most glorious and fragrant than at Nymans.
Nymans is one of the great 20th century gardens, and is set around a romantic house and ruins in a beautiful woodland estate, at Handcross, near Haywards Heath.
The gardens have been well known for growing old-fashioned roses, with rich, intoxicating fragrances and pastel shades, for over 100 years.
The Rose Garden has undergone an extensive planting scheme devised by Michael Marriot, technical director of internationally renowned rose breeder, David Austin.
Over 600 of David Austin’s English Roses have been added with repeat-flowering blooms from June through to October, whilst subtly complementing the existing roses with their soft colours.
It’s tricky to keep roses looking good, so Nymans has developed an organic spray with powerful natural ingredients to deter blackspot and mildew.
The garden team use alternate sprays of natural products (garlic, seaweed and milk) to deter the pests.
The Rose Garden will be at its most beautiful in late June and will peak twice more – at the end of August and in October, giving visitors three opportunities to see it out in full flower.
When Leonard Messel inherited Nymans in 1916 there were already many roses in the gardens.
However the collection was greatly enhanced when his wife Maud brought her favourite old roses over from Balcombe House, their previous home. Maud collected old-world and scented roses with particular associations, especially old roses. The rose garden was essentially her creation, Maud’s love of plants, especially of roses was well-known and it was her habit to beg cuttings from any friend she visited, not just from their garden, but from drawing-rooms vases or bridal bouquets. Many rarities arrived at Nymans in this way, with old gardens in Scotland and France proving the best hunting-grounds.
Fellow rose enthusiasts such as Ellen Willmott and E A Bunyard came to admire Maud’s collection.
Opening times – The gardens, plant centre, woods and shop are open daily from 10am-5pm and the house is open from 11am-3pm.