6 acres either side of the River Test. Fine display of paeonies, wisteria and spring flowering trees. Main garden has herbaceous and annual borders, fruit trees, rose pergola, lavender walk and extensive lawns. An arboretum planted in the 1930s by Sir Harold Hillier contains trees and shrubs providing interest throughout the yr. Please Note: No Dogs Allowed.
How to find us
The Island, Greatbridge, Romsey, Hampshire, SO51 0HP
1m N of Romsey on A3057. Entrance alongside Greatbridge (1st bridge Xing the River Test), flanked by row of cottages on roadside.
More about The Island
As its name implies the garden is on an island, formed by the main River Test and a substantial tributary. Extending to about 3 acres there is a further 3 acre arboretum across the river. The garden itself was established from the 1930s onwards. Sweeping lawns extend to the river edge. In spring, swathes of daffodils, many old varieties, abound. Later in the year, borders both annual and herbaceous provide further interest. A large Wisteria on the Island House provides both colour and scent in spring. There is a rose pergola which provides a backdrop to the borders. Mature trees add to the setting.
The arboretum, across the river, was originally planted in the 1930s by Harold Hillier. Many of the original species remain and have grown to a substantial size. There are three ponds (one in need of restoration) and many later plantings. A recent addition has been the establishment of an avenue of Metasequoia, which aligns with the Island House, culminating with a Wellingtonia. The avenue is also planted with daffodils for the spring, as are many other areas.
A number of varieties of ornamental trees (Prunus, Pyrus, Malus etc) provide colour in the spring followed by other varieties of shrubs to provide interest throughout the summer. Autumn colour is provided by Liquidambar, Acer, Beech and many other varieties. A recent addition has been the establishment of trees in a parkland setting in meadows adjoining including an Elm tree which is resistant to Dutch elm disease.