2024 update: The list of National Trust Gardens supported with Plant Belle designs and supports is still growing, with Hampshire's Hinton Ampner joining the list this month (February 2024). The list so far; Sissinghurst Castle Garden, Hidcote Manor, Castle Drogo, Knightshayes Court, Saltram, Dunham Massey, Kingston Lacy, The Shugborough Estate, Dudmaston Hall, Nymans, Emmetts Garden, Chartwell, Clumber Park, Wentworth Castle Gardens, Belton House, The Rotunda, St Michael's Mount, Dudmaston Hall...
2023 update: Back in 2022 we delivered a tonne of Heavy Edging Hoops to Dunham Massey in Cheshire. A very special place to me as I grew up in the farming community around the Dunham Massey Estate in Cheshire. We would visit the deer and the parkland on our rare days off. This year we have been commissioned to make an extraordinary number of new Edging Hoops for the National Trust property, so they must be working well! - Delivered May 2023.
2023 Update: First delivery of 2023, Belle Towers for our local National Trust Gardens at Castle Drogo (the last castle to be built in England). Back in 2008, Castle Drogo was our first big public garden commission. In collaboration with the then Head Gardener, we created the original 'George Belles' to beautifully support and adorn the established formal ‘Arts & Crafts’ garden, designed by Edwin Lutyens and George Dillistone back in the early 20th century.
2022 Update: We delivered a van load of Heavy Edging Hoops to Dunham Massey in Cheshire on our way up to our Scottish Summer holiday adventures. 300 acres of beautiful ancient National Trust parkland and gardens.
2019 Update: Been Plant Belle hunting at Saltram NT gardens this week, 30 Sidney Belles playing hide and seek. Only found 11! See photo gallery on facebook.com/PlantBelles/
Saltram House and Gardens took collection of their first 30 Sidney Belles, June 2018. The Sidney Belles are part of a new Dahlia garden project, by Head Gardener Nick Allison and his team, at the Saltram National Trust property. I plan to visit and photograph the results late August / early September next year, when the Dahlias and Belles are hopefully looking there best.
2018 Update: A second order for Coughton Court in Stratford-on-Avon, see over 70 Plant Belles installed in the beautiful gardens at Coughton Court since 2017.
Plant Belles have been supplying National trust gardens with Plant Supports since 2008. If you look hard enough among the flora you will also find Plant Belle designs at St Michael's Mount, Hidcote Manor, Castle Drogo and Knightshayes Court.
'George Belle' seen above, helps to support plants in the gorgeous deep floral boarders of the kitchen gardens, at Knightshayes Court, Nr Tiverton, Devon,
Back in 2013, the garden team at Knightshayes introduced over 80 additional Plant Belle designs to the wonderfully restored walled kitchen gardens. The Belles have been purchased to adorn, support and protect the plants, whilst also being in keeping with the Victorian origins of the setting.
John Lanyon, the former Head Gardener at Knightshayes first commissioned the Plant Belle team to create ‘Wigwams’. In 2009 over 20 large wigwam structures were handmade exclusively for the gardens. Each year they are re-dressed to supporting the extensive collection of fragrant Sweet Peas.
The National Trust collaboration started back in 2008, with the former Head Gardener at Castle Drogo, Andrew Midgley.
Andrew commissioned a ‘Grande’ Plant Belle to cope with the large scale planting in the ‘windy’ formal gardens at Castle Drogo, to be named after George Dillistone. Together we created the ‘George Belle’ which now adorns many large established gardens, supporting plants in adverse conditions and creating sculptural interest throughout the winter months.
Castle Drogo, nr Drewsteignton, overlooking the Teign valley and Dartmoor, installed 70 Plant Belles and stem supports, which comfortably adorn the beautifully established formal ‘Arts & Crafts’ garden, designed by Edwin Lutyens and George Dillistone back in the early 20th century.