High Beeches named among great gardens

High Beeches has been named as one of the seven best places to see wildflowers
High Beeches has been named as one of the seven best places to see wildflowers

A wild plant conservation charity has named High Beeches as one of seven great gardens to see wildflowers.

Plantlife named the Handcross woodland and water garden amongst the best in the nation for its ancient acid wildflower meadows, with more than 50 species of wildflowers and grasses attracting numerous insects, butterflies and moths.

Acid grassland is a unique habitat which evolved over many generations and was maintained by low-intensity grazing or haymaking.

The economic reality of agriculture intensification means that less than 3% of grassland remains unimproved, so hay-meadows such as at High Beeches are a rare type of grassland.

In addition to the meadow, the woodland and water garden is rich in wildflowers owing to its many microclimates and habitats, with over 150 species of wild plants, all verified by Arthur Hoare of the Sussex Botanical Recording Society.

Plantlife carries out practical conservation work across the UK, manages nature reserves, influences policy and legislation, runs events and activities that connect people with their local wild plants and works with others to promote the conservation of wild plants.

In June the garden’s ox-eye daisies and common spotted orchids are in flower and the garden is alive with bees, grasshoppers and butterflies.

High Beeches is open to the public every day, except Wednesdays, from 1pm to 5pm.