Knightshayes Court and Gardens (National Trust)
This Victorian country house just outside Tiverton is a 10 minute drive from Howden House. Set in rolling parkland it was designed by William Burgess for the Heathcoat-Amory family. The extensive gardens were designed by Edward Kemp and have topiary, specimen trees, rare shrubs, and a walled kitchen garden, which produces organic vegetables for the Stables Café. Both house and garden are open to the public.
Killerton House (National Trust)
Killerton House is 20 minutes by car from Howden House and was built in 1778 by Sir Thomas Acland on the site of an older Elizabethan house near Broadclyst, Exeter. It houses an 18th – 20th century costume exhibition. The garden was created in the 1770s by John Veitch with rhododendrons, magnolias, herbaceous borders and rare trees. Both house and garden are open to the public.
Rosemoor (Royal Horticultural Society)
From Lady Anne’s original garden to the Rose Garden (with over 2000 roses), the Fruit and Vegetable Garden , the Arboretum, the Lake and the Bog Garden, there is so much to see at Rosemoor, one of the newer RHS acquisitions. Situated at Great Torrington in North Devon it is well worth the hour’s drive from Howden House.
Castle Hill Gardens surround the magnificent Palladian house, seat of the Fortescues since 1454. The house was built in 1730 as the Earl Fortescue’s family home in North Devon. Today, Castle Hill is home to his descendants, the Earl and Countess of Arran. It is set in a spectacular 18th century parkland landscape punctuated with statues, follies and temples built by each generation of the Fortescues. The gardens are family and dog friendly and are included in Jim Gardiner’s top ten Woodland Gardens to visit in 2015. Gardens open to the public.
National Gardens Scheme
During 2015 3,800 gardens will open under the National Gardens Scheme. These are often private gardens and the money raised is given to various charities. Search on the NGS website to find gardens open in Devon during your visit.