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Bluebell Festival at Enys Garden

April 11, 2015 No Comments

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Searching out fields of bluebells used to be a yearly activity in my family. In preparation for Helston’s Flora Day, we’d venture into the woods of the Penrose Estate to pick bunches of the wild flower in order to decorate the town. Coming across small forest glades with nothing but the company of birds and the sway of the breeze was always a pleasure; the tiny blue heads of the bells would stand, sparkling animations amidst the undergrowth.

Enys Garden, just outside Penryn, is renowned for its own Bluebell Festival and is probably one of the best places in the county, or even the country to see these beautiful and fragile flowers.

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Within the 30 acre gardens lie the open meadow known as Parc Lye, where the spring show of bluebells is breath taking, as well as ponds, where the waterwheel can be found; the flower garden, which is gradually being restored to its former glory; a New Zealand garden, which reflects J.D. Enys’s plant hunting interests, and many woodland areas, which show different types of planting including many remarkable trees.

According to the National Trust, bluebells, which require light and warmth coming into the forest floor to trigger growth, are normally at their height around late April or early May.

But it’s worth noting that due to recent mild winters, the bluebell season has started peaking early – sometimes even early April.

The common bluebell or Hyacinthoides non-scripta as it is less commonly known, grows from a bulb and is protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act. Since 1998 it has been illegal to pick bluebells, with a triple figure fine for the picking of a single bulb.

The sweeping meadow of Parc Lye is carpeted with the tiny flowers, tossing their heads in the breeze. But it is not the only draw of the Gardens. Reputed to be Cornwall’s oldest garden, around 500 years old, there’s much to explore and photographers will have no problem whiling away hours here: each year the national press have a field day at Enys during the festival.

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Enys itself (the house) is being restored and lots of work has been done, including the removal of many rotten timbers. The model farm buildings and stable block are used to house a history room which has information about Enys, the gardens and the Enys family. These are is being extensively reorganised and is a work in progress.

Outside the festival access to Enys is limited to a few afternoons a week, but during the bluebell festival the garden is open all week.


Festival Opening Times
Saturday 2nd – Sunday 10th May.

During Bluebell festival week, Enys is open from 11am, last entry 4.30pm.

Adults: £5, Children 6-16: £2, Seniors: £4, Students: £2, Children under 5 free.
Dogs on leads are welcome in the gardens.

Getting there

From Bosinver, take the A390 to Truro and then the A39 (towards Falmouth). Once you pass the Norway Inn (on your right hand side) take the second left turn, signposted to Flushing, Restronguet and Mylor, and then the first right (look out for the sign for Enys Gardens). Carry straight on for just over a mile until you reach Enys Lodge and the entrance to the gardens. It will take approximately 40 minutes to get to Enys from Bosinver.The Enys Trust, St Gluvias, Penryn TR10 9LB
T: 01326 259885


Magnolias and Camellias

December 23, 2014 No Comments

Magnolias and Camellias are some of spring’s most glamorous beauties. With goblet or star-shaped flowers in colours ranging from pure white to deepest purple, many magnolias fill the chill spring air with gorgeous scent and Camellias, with their lotus like spiralling petals fill the garden with an exotic beauty.

Flowering from January onwards these plants are just some of the reasons to be booked in with Cornwall Cottage Holidays this spring. With so many beautiful gardens around the area, you could spend a whole week indulging your flower child.

Trelissick Gardens are cultivating Magnolia Stellata. With its lovely, lightly scented, white starry flowers, it’s a plant that looks stunning in full-bloom covering the bare branches before the leaves emerge. You’ll find many more magnolias and a whole garden bursting with spring delights.

The Trelissick website says it best itself: ‘Trelissick is a garden and estate of tranquil beauty with panoramic views down the Carrick Roads. Famed for its tender and exotic plants and shrubs it is a plantsman’s delight. The gardens feature walks through 500 acres of parkland and riverside woods.’

IMG_7646-3Trebah Gardens is home to a whole rhododendron valley that takes centre stage throughout spring. Towards Easter, the whole valley becomes a sea of rhododendrons. With its own variant in the pink blossoming Trebah Gem and hundreds of other varieties, you can understand why locals from villages like Mawnan Smith have been taking spring walks in the gardens for over a hundred years. The gardens are also home to the Himalayan tree rhododendrons, with varieties such as the magnificent Glory of Penjerrick, a plant with impossibly deep pink flowers, to the pale, lily-like flowers of the delicate Indian R. nuttallii.

For a more in depth look at what to expect from Trebah throughout the year go to this webpage.

Our next spring haven is the famous Lost Garden of Heligan. With more than two centuries of horticultural history, Heligan’s enchanting gardens and estate offer over 200 acres for your discovery. Home to a National Collection of ‘Rhododendrons & Camellias’, the UK’S largest rhododendron and the largest collection of Tree Ferns, The Lost Gardens is brimming with plantings to inspire and amaze.

Back towards the Helford and Mawnan Smith, April and May are great times to visit Glendurgan’s large, sheltered garden. We currently have a soft spot for this garden as friends recently got engaged in the centre of the 180-year-old maze. The shrubs range in colour from delicate lemon yellow to vivid magenta, and the valley setting shows them off to best advantage. There are rhododendrons and bluebells galore come springtime.

Trengwaiton Gardens near Penzance

July 12, 2014 No Comments

Trengwainton Gardens were given to the National Trust in 1961, 25 acres of fairly level paths, mostly accessible to wheelchair users.

Many Cornish gardens are at their best when the rhododendrons and azaleas are in bloom and I am sure this garden would have been beautiful in the earlier months too.  But  I visited this garden in July and was impressed by the cottage garden planting, especially the kitchen garden with all the traditional cottage garden flowers – Sweet peas, Hollyhocks, Corn flowers to name a few and a variety of vegetables.

From the terrace you can see for miles across the sea from St Michael’s Mount to The Lizard.

Small shop and pleasant tea house and walled tea garden – a sun trap.

Pope’s Garden – Port Navas

May 15, 2014 No Comments

When photographing some of our cottages in Port Navas I stumbled across this beautiful little garden in the middle of the hamlet. ‘Pope’s Garden’ with a bridge leading to it over the stream. A wonderful relaxing space, perfect for sitting back with a good book!

Calamansac in Spring

April 30, 2014 No Comments

The Beautiful 50 acre estate of Calamansac on the Helford River, comprising of two private beaches, The Helford River Sailing Trust, beautiful woodlands, East Wing, West Wing and Sail Loft.

In spring as many of the Cornish gardens Calamansac is alive with stunning flowers and plants, as you can see below! There are two gardeners who work very hard to keep the estate looking it’s best.

It truly is an incredible place to holiday!

Cornish Gardens in Spring

February 19, 2014 No Comments


Spring is when the gardens in Cornwall are at their best. People flock to see the beautiful rhododendrons, camellias, azaleas and magnolia all in bloom, and they are a spectacular sight!



Trebah Garden

Just on the outskirts of Falmouth in the village of Mawnan Smith, Trebah has its own private beach on the Helford River, the wonderful Planters Café, beautiful gardens and a great gift shop. With fun for all the family the different walks around the garden can keep you busy for hours.

Nearest Cottages:

The Haven



Glendurgan Garden (National Trust)

Leading down through beautiful gardens with a brilliant maze into the hamlet of Durgan. Glendurgan is a National Trust garden and has a wonderful open air café.

Nearest Cottages:

Rose Cottages



Trelissick Garden (National Trust)

On the River Fal with stunning views out towards Mylor Harbour and the sea, Trelissick has plenty to keep you occupied for a day out! With an art gallery selling local work, a second hand bookshop with some hidden gems, and that’s not even mentioning the garden.

Nearest Cottages:

Creek House


Carrick Treath


Enys Garden

Known locally for its stunning displays of bluebells, Enys Gardens is found near Mylor and Penryn.

Nearest Cottages:

Acorn Cottage


Cavinack Cottage


A little further away

Eden Project

One of the UK’s biggest attractions and it’s down here in Cornwall! About a 45 min drive from our cottages with the three iconic biomes, a brilliant café, shop and restaurant. A must see for many when visiting the area.

The Lost Gardens of Heligan

Also about a 45 min drive from our cottages but with 200 acres of beautiful gardens to explore it’s worth the drive. An incredible garden that was lost and has been brought back to life.