The Garden Guide

Book: Gardening tours by J.C. Loudon 1831-1842
Chapter: Middlesex, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Wilshire, Dorsetshire, Hampshire, Sussex, and Kent in the Summer of 1832

Nuneham Courtenay

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Nuneham Courtenay, a Seat of the Archbishop of York, is a place which has long been celebrated. We first saw it in 1804, when we visited it in the course of our walking tour. The orangery, and the flower-garden laid out by Mason, were then in great perfection. The roof, front, and two ends of the orangery were movable; and the orange trees, being planted in the soil, when the frame was removed, and the ground turfed over, appeared as if growing in the open lawn. The trees were then in vigorous growth, and covered with flowers and fruit. These trees no longer exist, having been destroyed, partly through the difficulty of heating the house in the winter season; but chiefly, as report states, through the carelessness of the gardener, who succeeded the worthy old man who had charge of them in 1804. The present gardener, Mr. Brodie, informed us that he had seen pieces of the trunks of these trees nearly 1 ft. in diameter. [Nuneham Park is a Palladian villa, built for the 1st Earl of Harcourt in 1756. Its landscaped grounds were designed by Lancelot Brown.]