Glorious Garden Weekend

Date: 01/06/2024

Glorious Gardens

A highlight of the horticultural calendar, this year’s magnificent Glorious Gardens festivities take place at Penshurst Place in the Weald of Kent on Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 June. As well as showcasing the exceptional 11-acre formal Grade I listed gardens at their very best, this annual celebration offers a packed schedule of engaging talks from expert exhibitors, guided tours, craft demonstrations and family-focused entertainment.

The event is timed to coincide with the blooming of Penshurst Place’s famous 100-metre Peony Border. Bursting with delicate pink peonies and filling the air with their sweet aroma, this impressive display features four different peony varieties in a range of pink hues and is a delight for the senses. In fact, Penshurst’s Peony Border is such a hotly anticipated experience that enthusiasts sign up for alerts to let them know as soon as the first peonies are in bloom – so this is a vision well worth a visit.

Early summer sees many of the 11 individual garden rooms in flower at this time of year, making it a perfect time to see the grounds. From the red, white and blue Flag Garden, abounding with scented roses and lavender, to the deep herbaceous borders and colour themed sections of the Jubilee Walk, graduating from hot reds and oranges to cooler purples and blues.

Other attractions over the weekend will include hosted garden tours with Head Gardener at Penshurst Place, Tony Wiseman; craft demonstrations and displays from Monica Zehler, a local pebble artist, and the Kent Guild of Spinners, Dyers and Weavers, as well as ‘forest school’ sessions on the Woodland Walk with Ambleford School of Rural Skills.

Throughout the gardens, visitors can also see photographs from the archives displayed in the gardens alongside how they look now, showcasing Penshurst Place’s ‘evolution over revolution’ approach to maintaining and enhancing the historic grounds.

There will be plenty to keep younger visitors entertained too, including a weaving wall, where children can add their creative input to a trellis of living art, a mini garden trail to follow, and complete observational challenge lists of ‘What can you spot?’ that prompt children to find and tick off various elements as they discover the nature all around them.

Glorious Gardens Weekend provides an ideal opportunity for visitors to find inspiration for their own gardens, with many of the plants that can be seen in the grounds being available to purchase in the Plant Centre. Additionally, during Glorious Gardens Weekend, visitors to Penshurst Place and Gardens can enjoy a 50% discount on a plant of their choice and the chance to win a hamper filled with garden goodies in the raffle. Be sure to visit the Gift Shop to see what’s included!

Ben Thomas, General Manager of Penshurst Place and Gardens says: “At its heart, Glorious Gardens Weekend is a celebration of our historic 11-acre formal gardens, but it’s also very much about celebrating the people who work here, the people who come to visit, and the many local partners and suppliers who help to make this such a special place.
“The events we put on over Glorious Gardens weekend cover a range of topics and interests, providing garden enthusiasts with insight, advice and inspiration, as well as having plenty on offer for budding horticulturists, nature lovers, craft enthusiasts and, of course, our youngest visitors too.

“Over the years we’ve been holding Glorious Gardens Weekend, there’s been increasing recognition of the health and wellbeing benefits that can be enjoyed simply by spending time outdoors and in nature. Through our eclectic mix of events, we hope to inspire our visitors to discover more about the gardens, wildlife and local ecology that surrounds us in this beautiful part of the Kent countryside.”

All activities and events are included within the price of a standard garden admission ticket, with free access extended to RHS members. To check ticket prices and for more information about Glorious Gardens weekend, visit the Penshurst Place website at:

The full Glorious Gardens 2024 timetable is as follows:
Saturday – 1st June:
Eli Ofir sketching in the Gardens (prints available to purchase in the Gift Shop)
Sunday – 2nd June:
Garden Tour with head gardener at Penshurst Place, Tony Wiseman (limited capacity – first come first served)
Martlets Choir performing in the House (upgrade ticket required)
Both days (1 & 2 June):
Drop-in Forest School sessions with Ambleford School of Rural Skills on the Woodland Walk (limited capacity – first come first served)
Kent Guild of Spinners, Dyers and Weavers demonstrating their skills and displaying crafts
Huge Weaving Wall for visitors to express their individuality and create a trellis of living art
Garden Goodies raffle to win hamper full of garden related products
50% of any one pot plant (limit one per person) special offer in the Plant Centre.
Mini children’s garden trail to ‘spot and see’
Monica Zehler pebble painting in the Gardens (completed and varnished pebbles available in the Gift Shop)
“Then and Now” photos from the garden archive on display too.

Location : Penshurst Place & Gardens