The Winter Garden at Mottisfont in Romsey

Travel, exploring and discovering something completely new comes in so many different forms. You don’t have to go far to find a little bit of everyday magic.

A garden that comes to life in the depths of winter is something really special. The winter garden at Mottisfont in Romsey was full of bright, colourful plants that could brighten up even the dullest day!

Getting some fresh air, stretching my legs and admiring the beautiful plants in bloom was a great way to brighten up January.

Take a look…

Eight centuries of history are buried within Mottisfont’s walls. An Augustinian priory was founded here in 1201, laying the foundations for the 18th-century structure that’s now visible. Today, hints of Mottisfont’s medieval past live alongside the stylish redevelopment that took place in the early 20th century. – The National Trust

Mottisfont has several gardens and walks, perfect for weekend trips and a bit of escapism. In front of the house there is a walled garden and a winter garden and behind it are longer walks around the grounds.

Mottisfont also has a font stream that runs right through the grounds

There’s lots to explore, and two good cafes so once the cold has set in and you’re ready to warm up, you’re not far from a hot drink.

The Walled Garden

At this time of year the walled garden is pretty sparse and it’s mostly winter veggies that are growing.

We saw crops of beetroot, chard and other root veg flourishing despite the cold. While it did still have charm, I think this space would really come into itself when it is in full bloom across the warmer seasons.

The Winter Garden

Compared to the walled garden, the winter garden was a positive injection of colour as the plants had been specifically added to bloom in the depths of winter.


There were two plants that really caught my eye, one that had no leaves and looked like bare twigs but it has the brightest colouring that went from red to yellow. It looked like the phoenix of plants!

Unfortunately, no matter how hard I tried, I could not capture this plant’s colour through a lens but you’ll know if you ever see it because it’s so fierce looking!

The other was like someone had painted some berries with purple paint. The colour was unbelievable, a shock among the brown drab branches bringing the plant and the garden to life. This one I did manage to get a good picture of, and as you can tell, I wasn’t lying about the colour!

I’m no gardener, but it did get me thinking about trying to find out if any of these would work in the garden at home.

I’ve seen Australian coral reefs and the tropical flowers of the Caribbean and the colourful vibrancy of these plants held their own against their tropical counterparts.

Another plant that I’ve got no idea what the name is, this straggly thing below, is just and weird and wonderful as the plants I’ve seen further afield.

It’s fantastic that you don’t have to go far to discover something completely new or fantastic as you’d think you’d find in a more exotic location.

The great thing about being in the UK is that you get some of the unique British quirks, like a fairy feast in the middle of the garden…

…and teeny, tiny fairy homes…

…and nests fit for a fairy Queen!

Alongside all the above were some more traditional plants too like this variation of holly. It had a deep, dark green centre and a like yellow edging, like it had its own hem!

After a wonderful couple of hours spent touring the grounds it was time to head home.

This spectacular sunset marked the end of an excellent afternoon!

If you’d like to find out more about Mottisfont, the house, garden, grounds and special events, take a look at the National Trust Mottisfont website.

A carefully crafted robin from leaves and twigs nestled in a display at Mottisfont!

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