Bullsmoor Lane, Enfield, Middlesex, EN1 4RQ
Telephone: 020 8993 6266
Review by Janet Eliston - 2010
Ample Disabled Parking. Mobility scooters available, Café serving lunch and light refreshments, with an outside seating area. You are allowed to bring your own picnic/snacks and eat while visiting garden.
Car Park * * * * *
Gardens * * * *
Toilet * * * *
Restaurants * * * *
Small Plant Centre and Gift Shop * * * *
This is a College for horticulture, flower arranging and other crafts and displays are often to be viewed as you exit the entrance hall. The gardens are mostly accessible. Near the entrance is a Japanese garden. I didn’t venture in as it didn’t look as though my scooter would cope. Across the way is an ultra modern, jungle garden designed by Kim Wilde. Along the road to the right you pass through many and varied display gardens. I found the “front” gardens on the R/H side and those on the opposite side inaccessible because of a high-ish kerb, but others may be braver than me. However, they can be viewed and admired from the pathway and are truly inspirational. There is an alley-way half way along on the left hand side and gives a good view of the whole garden nearby. There is also an ex-Chelsea exhibit and a garden devoted to Princess Diana.
Beyond these gardens are the “Which” experimental gardens, fairly accessible and worth a visit.
Towards the West side are even more beautiful gardens, including a Spiritual Garden, with various areas devoted to various religions. There also is a nice shaded area, where you can sit and perhaps enjoy your lunch and a good book, before you explore the rest of the garden. There is also a garden designed for disabled folk in this area, although you need to access your route as some of the walls and planting make it not so easy to get around!
Soon you will come to the husbandry area, where you can see some of the animals they care for and nearby is a lake. If you travel around this will see even more gardens as you travel towards the exit.
A new “folly” garden has been installed with roses dotted around the structures. This is a project to remind us of the old manor which apparently used to belong to Queen Elizabeth I and was rented out to the Capel family in the 1500s.
Just before the exit is the café, where you can enjoy a nice ice-cream or a “cuppa”. As you exit you can look around the gift shop and purchase some very reasonable plants, but beware of the outside plant sales area, it has deep cobbles and my scooter got stuck there and – after I had vacated the scooter - it took two men to retrieve it and put it back on solid ground!
An enjoyable, relaxing time can be spent in these gardens.