Waystrode Manor 3446

Cowden, England, Kent, Sevenoaks

Brief Description

Waystrode Manor is a 15th-century estate which has only a few remaining original features. The re-designed garden dates from the 1960s, although the 16th-century hammer ponds remain and are now used for bog planting. The garden is mainly planted in a cottage style.

History

Although the house dates from the 15th century, there was no significant garden until the present ownership. The garden were re-designed after 1963.

Detailed Description

Alongside the entrance drive, edged with horse chestnut species, is a rhododendron/camellia woodland walk around a pond. In front of the house and stable buildings is a large gravel circle, and an area of grass with specimen trees including a Liriodendron tulipifera flowering for the first time in 1988. To the west of the house an old orchard has recently been planted with many new fruit trees on dwarfing rootstocks. The small kitchen garden areas contain a large vegetable tunnel.

Behind the house is a courtyard area planted mostly with herbs. Extending from this is a stone path flanked with abundant herbaceous borders of a ‘cottage style', and enclosed by yew hedges trained into arches and one bird topiary. At the end of this walk is a white garden with a view to the fields beyond through a pillared gate.

A half-timbered building in the style of an oast house lies to the east of the main house. This building replaces the original oast house destroyed by a German bomb in the 1940s, and is used as a party room or, when the garden is open to the public, a tea room.

The heated swimming pool and attractive patio is well-screened from the rest of the garden by a rockery, trees and a raised ‘yellow' herbaceous border. The hard tennis court is flanked by climbing and bush roses on one side and a Laburnum pergola on the other, whilst a semi-circular patio surrounded by H T roses and lavender has been constructed as a viewing area. New features (as of 1988) are a wisteria (dark blue species) pergola walk with patterned stone paving, and a waterfall/rockery area. Several ornaments and statues provide further interest, and planned in the near future is a white Wisteria feature around a large stone urn brought back from Cyprus.

The lawns are dotted with mixed specimen trees, mostly young. Sixty-three trees were lost in the 1987 storm, but these have been replaced and surgery carried out on the damaged trees in a manner to preserve a pleasing outline shape. This is a ‘plantsperson's' garden containing many unusual and interesting plants. New trees, plants and shrubs have been added over the years to give a wider variety.

Features

Style

  • Cottage Garden Style
  • Pond
  • Description: 16th century hammer ponds now used for bog planting
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
  • House (featured building)
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
  • Walk
  • Description: Alongside the entrance drive, edged with horse chestnut species, is a rhododendron/camellia woodland walk around a pond.
  • Specimen Tree
  • Description: Liriodendron tulipifera flowering for the first time in 1988.
  • Earliest Date:
  • Latest Date:
  • Orchard
  • Description: To the west of the house an old orchard has recently been planted with many new fruit trees on dwarfing rootstocks.
  • Kitchen Garden
  • Description: The small kitchen garden areas contain a large vegetable tunnel.
  • Garden Building
  • Description: A half-timbered building in the style of an oast house lies to the east of the main house.
  • Herbaceous Border
  • Description: There is and a raised `yellow? herbaceous border.
  • Pergola
  • Description: Laburnum pergola
  • Walk
  • Description: There is a wisteria (dark blue species) pergola walk.
  • Statue
  • Description: There are several ornaments and statues.
Waterfall, Rockery, Stable Block
Access & Directions

Directions

The site is 0.5 miles west of the village of Cowden, 7 miles west of the centre of Tunbridge Wells.
Authorities

Civil Parish

  • Cowden
History

Detailed History

Although the house dates from the 15th century, there was no significant garden until the present ownership. The garden was created from fields. Several 16th-century hammer ponds have provided very attractive bog planting, and one has recently been extended to provide a waterfall feature amidst a rockery area.
References

References

Contributors

  • Kent Gardens Trust

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