Yorkshire’s Royal Horticultural Garden

Harlow Carr Garden Harrogate, formerly the top trials garden and base of the Northern Horticultural Society was taken over by The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS)  in 2001. It is now a top class garden and visitor attraction with many new features. This is a result of volunteers hard work and from the capital investment by RHS, the nations top gardening charity. If you think this picture is a bit fishy for a garden then you may be surprised at the other modern sculpture that is being progressively introduced into Harlow Carr.

The gardens once were part of the Forest of Knaresborough, an ancient royal hunting ground. In 1734 sulphur springs were discovered on the site and remain beneath the present Limestone Rock Garden. The Streamside Garden, Scented Garden and Gardens through Time are worth a visit but the latest attraction is the new Alpine House with an extensive range of small but interesting Alpine plants.

Harlow Carr is moving with the times and is building a large new ‘green construction’ learning centre to support the educational remit of the RHS. This will incorporate an enlarged library but free book loans are still available from the existing library for RHS members. If you want more dynamic gardeners tips to help you in your own garden click here on the web.

Harlow Carr is renown for its Rhododendrons, many planted by Geoffrey Smith (1928-2009) the one time superintendent who sadly died earlier this year.

alpine  scheme

How many plants can you grow in a 5 foot square box? These alpines are outside the new Alpine house enjoying the natural sun. I think the vertically packed in rocks are an interesting way to display your plants.


Trees are a major part of any large garden and Harlow Carr has great woodland walks, a bird watching area and these colourful Acers.

For short comments on other Yorkshire gardens  that you may wish to visit.

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