These gardens have been famous for their displays of massed bedding plants since they were opened to the public by Queen Victoria (r1837-1901).
Queen Caroline's flower border
Queen Caroline, the wife of George II (r1727-1760), was an enthusiastic gardener. She had the first flower border planted along the half mile long Broad Walk. Today it is the longest mixed flower garden in Britain. It features many old English plants first re-introduced in the 1920's by palace historian, Ernest Law.
When Queen Victoria opened these gardens to the public, their busy formal designs, overshadowed by great yew trees, were finally replaced with popular seasonal displays of massed flower bedding.
During the First World War (1914-18) these flower beds were turned over to grow vegetables.
Today, our gardeners carry on the tradition of seasonal bedding displays. The 28 beds of the Great Fountain Garden are planted with bulbs, summer annuals, all grown in the palace nurseries.
Hampton Court holds the National Plant Collections of Heliotropium and Lantana species. You can find some of them in the summer planting.