Reorganised in 1900 with the help of experts from Kew, the West Garden provides a splendid show of colour from April through to September.
Wide borders filled with botanical surprises such as the naturalised crown imperials, elegant Edwardian daffodils and a handkerchief tree frame a tapestry of box-edged parterres bursting with beautiful bearded irises in late May/early June. The white wisteria drapes down the historic walls whilst peonies and alliums pop in the borders.
Irises are a signature plant at Doddington, they have been cultivated in the West Garden since the 1980s. Grown within box and grass-edged parterres, their sumptuous flowers create a striking tapestry effect in May and early June.
During iris season, we open the gardens daily to extend the period of time people can see them as their bloom is quite short.
Antony Jarvis, whose family inherited the Doddington Estate in 1830 and still live here, is the creator of Doddington Hall’s famous iris display.
Antony’s favourite bearded irises include:
Antony Jarvis shares his advice for growing irises, including the ‘Doddington system’ of division with the Royal Horticultural Society.
The ‘Doddington System’ is a trouble-free way to divide irises, they need an absolute minimum of attention under this system. Some of the older cultivars continue to flourish after over 30 years in the same beds here at Doddington. The key advantages are a regular and full flower display, speed and physical convenience.
Our garden team split the irises every year using the ‘Doddington System’ after flowering has ended during June. At this point the early summer leaves and flower stems have started to die back, and the late summer leaves have started to grow.
After splitting, we sell Doddington iris rhizomes in the Farm Shop – keep an eye on our social media for when they hit the shelves.
Please note that the Irises on show in the Kitchen Garden, along the wall, do not belong to us and we cannot sell the rhizomes we split from them. If you would like to purchase any of those irises please contact The English Iris Co.