A secret cottage garden


Friday morning was spent meandering through Ballyrobert Cottage Garden, a unique and beautiful garden a short drive from Belfast and  just a few miles from my home. I’ve been here before but this time I was on my own with plenty of time to spare. So after parking the car and picking up a map and guide, off I set to explore. It had rained quite heavily that morning but that didn’t bother me – I liked the sound of my feet squelching along and with a gentle breeze on my face I knew I was going to have a pleasant morning.

Ballyrobert Cottage Garden is set in 6 acres of land, designed around a 17th century landscape with the original cottage and barn as key features.  According to the guide, the biggest influence on the garden’s design is Irish born William Robinson, thought by many to be the father figure of the Cottage Garden style.

From the hayshed and reception, I walked along a grassy path before reaching the Station Lawn, whose borders were packed full of cottage garden delights. These are just a few of my favourites…




From there I dandered along the Rhododendron Walk before reaching the Lakeside Garden.


I particularly liked this as a space to sit down and chill….



I made my way through to the Old Barn and walked through into the Front Garden where these crimson beauties were swaying in the breeze.



The Guardian listed Ballyrobert Gardens amongst its Top 10 Secret Gardens in the UK in May 2016. It’s no surprise really – it’s a beautiful space, a place to enjoy nature in all its glory, seek solace or inspiration and take time to just wander and reflect.

I should also mention that it’s not just a beautiful garden but also a Royal Horticultural Society Partner Garden and a lot of the plants grown in the garden are also grown and sold at their nursery. I ended up making a purchase there too before I left.

I completed my visit with a sit down and a coffee in their tea room. Much changed since my last visit, I loved the pretty white furniture and the ivy plants and cacti that filled the space . It’s self service so you just leave your money in the honesty box – loved that !



 I will back later in the year for another botanical pick me up and to see how the garden changes with the seasons.

Hopefully I have given you a little taster of this lovely place and I would really recommend a visit. Clearly lots of others think so too from the reviews on Tripadvisor

You can find out more information on the  Ballyrobert Garden website

They also have a Facebook page


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