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December 8, 2016

Hidden Gardens S01.

Hidden Gardens opens a door to a forgotten age of horticulture, and builds an interesting timeline of how gardening has changed over the centuries.


  • Ep1. St.Fagans
    Chris Beardshaw is at St Fagan’s Castle, near Cardiff, Wales, where a turn-of-the-20th-century Italianate garden is being returned to its former glory. After cutting away dense foliage, the workers uncover a courtyard with a pool of water, flowerbeds, stone paving and evidence of what was once a flight of grass steps.
  • Ep2. Aberglasney
    At Aberglasney House in Carmarthenshire, Wales, a team attempt the restoration of a 17th-century cloister garden, a process inspired by the medieval idea of the ‘enameled mead’ (blocks of grass studded with low-growing flowers). Only the outlines of the paving and perimeter wall remain, so the team embark on fascinating research about what the plants and flowers would have looked like in its heyday.
  • Ep3. Hidcote
    Nestling in the heart of the picturesque English Cotswolds, Hidcote is one of Britain’s most visited gardens.
    Here, Head Gardener Glyn Jones is overseeing a project to restore the original planting of its creator, influential American Lawrence Johnston.
  • Ep4. Glynfyw
    In rural Pembrokeshire in Wales, a local landowner has bestowed a gift of an overgrown walled kitchen garden to the community. It turns out to be a classic Victorian garden, and Chris Beardshaw follows its organic restoration.
  • Ep5. Lyveden
    Lyveden New Bield in Northamptonshire is a unique, surviving Elizabethan garden lodge. Sir Thomas Tresham was a Catholic in a Protestant’s reign and built the house to represent his beliefs. This resulted in him spending 15 of his last 25 years in prison under house arrest. The building was never completed, and, when he died in 1605, the workers downed tools, abandoning the lodge and leaving the makings of a stunning garden unfinished. Today the lodge and garden are virtually as they left it, providing a rare insight into the garden designs of the Elizabethan period. The restoration team are using modern tools to discover the hidden landscape and have unearthed the original mounds, watercourses and terraces.
  • Ep6. Gibberd
    Harlow New Town’s chief architect and planner, Sir Frederick Gibberd was one of the most important British architects of the 20th Century. For over 30 years, he worked tirelessly to create a horticultural work of art which is now recognised as a key piece of 20th-century garden design. The seven-acre Gibberd Garden in Essex features glades, groves, pools and alleys which provide settings for some 80 sculptures, architectural salvage, large ceramic pots, a gazebo and a moated castle. Chris Beardshaw follows the restoration of its original design. There is also archive footage of Sir Frederick talking about the garden.

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