Trebah - a stunning Cornish valley garden

Stately Home & Garden

Trebah - a stunning Cornish valley garden

Trebah Garden, near Falmouth in Cornwall, is a 26-acre garden with striking sub tropical plants grown in a valley that ultimately leads down to a private beach on the Helford River.

One of several sub tropical gardens in the area, Trebah was acquired in 1838 by the Fox family who had built Glendurgan Garden (which is just next door, and also open to the public). The Fox family were, in fact, responsible for creating six local gardens - which explains the area's amazing horticultural heritage.

The Foxes were a prominent Falmouth family of Quakers. Charles Fox, whose business interests included mining and shipping, bought the existing Georgian house, garden and Polgwidden Cove at the foot of the valley for £4,375, and laid Trebah out as a pleasure garden.

The efforts of Charles Fox and his wife Sarah were continued by their daughter and her husband Edmund Backhouse when she inherited the house. Many exotic plants from around the world were added to the garden at this period.

The twentieth century was a more chequered period for the garden, but Trebah was ultimately much restored in the 1980s by Major Tony Hibbert and Eira Hibbert, before being handed to an independent charitable trust, who opened Trebah to the public.

The garden now provides a memorable day out, with exotic woodland plants, footpaths through giant gunnera, and a valley full of blue hydrangeas with a white bridge reminiscent of Monet's garden. At the bottom of the garden is a private and otherwise inaccessible beach on the beautiful Helford River - just the place for an ice cream!

Further reading

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