Trelissick Gardens, National Trust Cornwall

Trelissick Gardens, Cornwall

Trelissick Gardens overlook the open expanse of Carrick Roads (Falmouth Harbour). Trelissick Garden is now in the care of the National Trust. The property includes an extensive park and there are woodland walks beside the river. There is also an Art and Craft gallery. It is one of the finest maritime views in Cornwall. This is a young garden, which has been planted with masses of Hydrangeas, Rhododendrons, Camellias, and is surrounded by sweeping parkland and woods. Walks may be enjoyed here all year round.

The estate is right at the head of the River Fal estuary, with panoramic views over the estuary, extensive park and woodland walks beside the river. At the centre of the estate is the garden, which has year-round colour, with the the spring blossom being particularly noteworthy.

Around 1825 Thomas Daniell planted woodland along the shores of the estuary and the carriage drives were laid out in the park. Between 1844 and 1913 the estate was owned by the Gilbert family who improved the grounds, and planted ornamental woodlands and many of the tall holm oaks and conifers in the garden. The garden as seen today was largely created by Mr and Mrs Ronald Copeland after Mrs Copeland inherited Trelissick in 1937.

Trelissick House, Cornwall

The House

In about 1750 a comparatively small two-storey villa was built at Trelissick on the foundations of an earlier building. This house was then remodelled in 1825 by Thomas Daniell whose father had bought the estate in 1800. He used the architect Peter Frederick Robinson to add the columned portico which rises to the height of the south front. Daniell's money came from mining interests in Cornwall. From the house (not open to the public) and drive there are splendid views across a great sweep of grass to the Carrick Roads. On clear days Pendennis Castle can be seen in the far distance.

When the Pevsner toured the country in the mid 20th century to report on all prominent buildings, he commented on Trelissick House."The most severe neo-classical Greek Mansion in Cornwall."

The Garden

The garden itself does not offer extensive views, as the sub-tropical plants need to be protected from the prevailing winds. Mrs Copeland planted the garden with a great range of rhododendrons and azaleas. There are also hydrangeas, camellias, flowering cherries, magnolias, eucalyptus, maples and exotic plants such as the ginkgo and many palm trees.

Trelissick has an intimate feel with many changes of level and perspective and the winding paths, shaded by great holm oaks and beeches, will open suddenly into areas of grass.

Spacious lawns mould the character of Trelissick. The main lawn is shaded by a fine Japanese cedar and borders of summer-flowering shrubs and plants run along its sides. The sloping lawns, sloping down to the water, are planted informally with great cedars and cypresses, with camellias, magnolias, flowering cherries, rhododendrons and hydrangeas, a specialty of Trelissick.

The gardens feature walks through 500 acres of parkland and riverside woods. The walks lead to a summer house and a Saxon cross and then back to a raised drive. As you follow the paths different views will suddenly appear across the tree tops into the tropical dell, with its palm trees, banana trees, tree ferns, large-leaved rhododendrons.

The King Harry Ferry Road runs through the centre of the garden, and a narrow path and rustic bridge lead over it to the Carcadden area, a newer part of the garden. This area has lawns that feature informal plantings of cedars and cypresses. A more open a parkland atmosphere, with specimens of magnolias, camellias, and the ever present rhododendrons. A Cornish apple orchard has been established here.

National Trust in Cornwall

Historic Houses in Cornwall

National Trust, Trelissick Gardens


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