Carwinion Road, Mawnan Smith,
Falmouth, TR11 5JA
Tel: (01326) 653212
Beautiful Victorian gardens
Carwinion, an 18th century manor house set in fourteen acres of natural Victorian gardens overlooking the Helford River Estuary.
The house was built at the end of the 18th century and added to in the 1840's. It was at this time that the garden started to be developed. The Rogers family together with their cousins, the Fox family of Glendurgan, collaborated to bring in rare plants. The very fine specimens of Dicksonia Antartica and Cryptomaria Japonica are most likely to date from this time. The few bamboo originally in the garden were introduced at the beginning of the 20th century.
Anthony Rogers has spent thirty years restoring and replanting Carwinion which became the property of the National Trust in 1969.
The garden in Anthony's words, un-manicured. It has to be so. The days when there were fifteen gardeners have long gone, these days Jane still oversees the garden and its planting and gets out there when time allows and Chris continues to be an invaluable and indispensable help twice a week. Needless to say we're always on the look-out for willing volunteers!
There are ponds and streams on whose banks are found some quite amazing specimens. A huge Drymis Winteri, a stunning sight in spring. An enormous grove of Gunnera Manicata whose ten foot stems bear leaves eight or nine feet wide. The sides of the valley are filled with large Rhododendrons amongst which slightly incongruously, grow Chusan Palms. The old quarry, from which came the stone to build the house is full of ferns and hellebores and has one of the finest bamboo in the garden Drepanostachyum Falcatum. On the west side is a tiny valley now the Japanese Garden full of acers and everything Japonica that can be crammed in, and overlooked by very big Musa Basjoo and some fine Semiarundinaria Fastuosa.
The garden is open all year round and there is always something of interest to see. In early spring the carpets of primroses are a wonderful sight. Rhododendron Nobleanum starts flowering at Christmas and there are of course the early camellias, St. Ewe and Cornish Snow. These are followed by a large patch of wild blue anemones, snowdrops and hellebores. Fascinating for children are the tiny Arisarum Proboscideum-the mouse tailed arum. Later in spring and early summer come foxgloves in profusion and pink campion while down in the wetter parts of the valley are large yellow Lysichiton and ragged robin, ferns unfurling, bamboo sprouting, nature at its best.
Nature lovers from around the world visit Carwinion to admire its renowned collection of bamboo and to relax among the beautiful and rare plants in these 14 un-manicured acres of tranquil garden.
Dogs and children are welcome. There is limited wheelchair access, unless Anthony can be persuaded to lend his very fine electric one. Cream teas are served outside on the terrace between April 1st and September 30th and by arrangement one may stay in the house for Bed and Breakfast.
More than two centuries of family history in one home have come to an end with the death of Anthony Rogers in 2013. Mr Rogers, 75, had been ill for some time. His widow, Jane, must now leave the house which has been her home for more than 20 years as under the terms of an agreement signed in 1969 the property now passes completely to the National Trust. The future of the house and its gardens, including woodland, ponds and a nationally-important collection of bamboo, is uncertain. The National Trust said it was too early to consider what it would do with the property.
About two miles south-west of Falmouth.
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