Chiswick House Camellia festival opens in the setting of the newly restored and planted italian garden
Chiswick House and Gardens Trust brings a burst of glorious colour to the winter season with the second annual Camellia Festival running from 18th February to 18th March 2012.
This year’s festival celebrates these beautiful blooms in the setting of the spectacular Chiswick Gardens Conservatory designed by Samuel Ware in 1813. To complement the Festival, the newly restored Italian Garden, created for the 6th Duke of Devonshire in 1814, has been replanted with an early display of spring flowers. The early 19th Century Italian Garden was at the cutting edge of horticultural fashion and extravagant gardening.
The Chiswick House Camellia collection, housed in the conservatory, is a national treasure and probably the oldest in the Western world. It includes rare and historically important examples of these beautiful plants, with a fabulous array of blooms; pink, red, white and striped. Many of these are descended from the original planting in 1828. Among these is the unique Middlemist’s Red, originally brought to Britain from China in 1804 by Londoner John Middlemist, a nurseryman from Shepherds Bush. It is one of only two in the world known to exist – the other being in Waitangi in New Zealand.
New features for the festival in 2012 include the replanting of the Italian Garden; new Camellia displays by specialist nursery Trehane and experts on hand to advise on every aspect of Camellias and how to grow them.
To complement the Festival, the shop will be selling special Camellia inspired merchandise, as well as a range of varieties of Camellia Plants. The award-winning café will be serving a delicious seasonal menu. All profits raised help to support Chiswick House and Gardens Trust, a registered charity dedicated to the preservation and continued enhancement of the historic Chiswick House Gardens open free to the public from dawn to dusk everyday.
The Chiswick House Camellia Festival 2012
Chiswick House Gardens, London W4 2QN
Dates: 18 February –18 March 2012
Conservatory opening hours: Daily 10 am –4pm
Chiswick House: exclusive ‘Festival’ weekend openings 10am – 4pm