Open gardens in Dorset - October 2017

Glorious autumn colours at Minterne

Glorious autumn colours at Minterne - Credit: Archant

Here are gardens great and small where you can admire autumn’s flaming display

Edmondsham House

Six acres of mature gardens with views, trees and shaped hedges surrounding a 16th/18th century house. Large productive Victorian walled garden, and wide herbaceous borders planted for colour. Homemade teas 3.30-4pm.

• Open: Every Wednesday in October, 2-5pm

• Where: Edmondsham, Wimborne, BH21 5RE

Frankham Farm

This large and lovely garden, created since 1960 by the late Jo Earle, is filled with a wide variety of plants, shrubs and trees from around the world. Admire wonderful autumn colour, particularly the oaks. Home-produced pulled pork or sausages in a roll, vegetarian soup and homemade teas.

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• Open: 15 October, 11.30am-5pm

• Where: Ryme Intrinseca, Sherborne, DT9 6JT


Six acre garden with over 200 mature trees, formal borders, wild flower and wildlife areas, vegetable garden. Wonderful autumn colour. Lovely opportunity for family walks, children and dogs welcome. Homemade teas.

• Open: 12 November, 12-4pm.

• Where: Brodham Way, Shillingstone, DT11 0TE

For more details on these National Garden Scheme events visit

Best for Spectacular Specimen Trees

Minterne House, Minterne Magna

The small lakes, cascades and streams at Minterne offer new vistas at every turn around the mile long horseshoe-shaped garden covering 23 acres. Along the way enjoy many rare and fine trees ablaze with spectacular autumn colour.

• Open: Daily until 9 November.

• Where: Minterne Magna, Dorchester, DT2 7AU House & Gardens, Beaminster

The Wild Garden and Arboretum at Mapperton House & Gardens offer a feast of colour in the autumn with orange and red stewartia pseudocamellia, and several maples including the red-leaved acer rubra and the yellow acer saccharinum.

• Open: Daily (except Saturdays) until 31 October

• Where: Mapperton House, Mapperton, Beaminster DT8 3NR

Forde Abbey & Gardens, near Chard

In autumn stunning specimen trees put on a dazzling display at Forde Abbey: golden leaves, big as dinner plates, fall into the Great Lake from the huge red oak quercus rubra, by the Mermaid Pond a tulip tree liriodendron tulipifera adds a dash of gold with its yellow tulip-shaped leaves, and towards the stone-built ‘ha-ha’, the bright red leaves of the red maple acer rubra ‘October Glory’ glow in the autumn sun.

• Open: Open daily.

• Where: Forde Abbey Estate, Chard TA20 4LU

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