This is where my love with lavender began...Standen. Standen is located in West Sussex. It was built in 1892 and designed by Phillip Webb. Webb was a lifelong friend of William Morris. Morris is well known as a pioneering designer of the textiles/wallpapers. His designs were all derived from nature. This entire home was decorated by Webb and Morris. There were field of lavender every where. You could smell it all over the property. The property sits on 12 acres that are beautifully landscaped. It has trails and paths that wind all over the property. A view of one of the gardens
For more information and photos of Standen you can go here: http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/main/w-vh/w-visits/w-findaplace/w-standen.htm
And now for the icing on the cake.....Hampton Court Palace.
Well I could go on for days about this one. It will leave you speechless.
In 1514 Lord Chamberlain leased the property and modernized the medieval manor. 1514 Thomas Wolsey leased it and began building it on a grander scale. Henry VIII then took over in 1529 and added on and remodeled. Late in 1689 Sir Christopher Wren demolished most of it to build for William & Mary. In 1838 Queen Victoria reopened the gardens. Now that may bore some you, but you will be amazed by what goes on at the palaces. One builds it, one tears it down because it wasn't good enough.
Jane Seymour (#3)gave birth to their son here. Henry VIII divorced Anne of Cleves here, and kept her under house arrest. He married his 6th wife Kathryn Parr here. Lots if interesting things went on at this place. And I have a slight obsession with Henry VIII...he was an interesting character. Shakespeare also preformed in the Great Hall for King James I. Pretty cool.
The park covers 750 acres, the formal gardens cover 60 acres. The palace alone covers 6 acres. To this day the Great Vine still produces grapes. The Great Vine was planted in 1768 and still grows! You must google this...it is quite amazing. They have taken 100's of cuttings from it and sold, or grown. Just in case the original ever dies.
The park also has a huge maze that was created in 1690, it covers 1/3 of an acres, and consists of half a mile of winding paths. It is created by yew trees that are 7' high. It takes on average 20 minutes to reach the center.
I was told by several people, and I have read it as well, that Alice in Wonderland's garden was based on Hampton Court Palace. The rose garden, the maze, and the formal gardens. Supposedly the Queen of Hearts character was based on Henry VIII. Quite Interesting. If you ever have the chance to visit Hampton Court Palace you will see the similarities.
I was amazed at the trees. Can you imagine trimming all of those trees! There are hundreds of them. My pictures really do the place no justice. So please go to the website below for more info, and photos. You must see the garden.
Well I am all depressed now because I would rather be in England visiting stunning gardens than sitting here ...sigh!