Herbal Travels: The Herb Gardens of Fulham Palace

| 11/5/2010 2:49:09 PM

n.heraud2You can check out the Lemon Verbena Lady at her blog http://lemonverbenalady.blogspot.com.

I was very happy to see some new herb gardens during my visit to England in September. One of them is at Fulham Palace, which was once the residence of the Bishops of London.

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The courtyard of Fulham Palace.
Photo by Nancy Heraud

The Bishops acquired the site in 1704 and the last Bishop moved out in 1973. The Palace was then leased in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham in 1975. The Museum of the Palace was opened to the public in 1992.

I found this herb garden in the book Herbs & Herb Gardens of Britain by Elizabeth & Reginald Peplow. Ironically, it talked about how the knot garden was "a straggling and unsightly mess" and it had been restored. Unfortunately, it is in need of renovation once again. They have started the renovation and it should be completed in about 18 months or so.

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The wall enclosing the knot garden and orchard.
Photo by Nancy Heraud

If only walls could talk—what a history this wall has had! The archway into the herb garden is from Tudor times. It was likely that early on the garden was arranged in formal geometrical shapes formed by paths and hedges. Flowers, vegetables and herbs would have been grown in the same space.