The Gardens

Sharpham has been a dwelling since the 14th century but the present Palladian Mansion was built in the 1760s.

The gardens have been through many changes over the years and are set in a Lancelot Capability Brown landscape. There are 19th century pleasure gardens around the house and the formal terraced gardens were designed by Percy Cane in the 1960s.

Ruth and Maurice Ash bought the Sharpham Estate in 1962, and Ruth especially put much time and effort into rejuvenating and developing the present Grade II* listed landscape.

The gardens today are beautiful and productive: people staying on retreat work in the vegetable gardens with our garden team.

Walled Garden at Sharpham House

There are two walled gardens behind Sharpham House. The larger is a productive organic kitchen garden which grows vegetables and fruit for our kitchens. It also features a 100ft greenhouse which was erected to replace the previous one three years ago.

Retreatants at the Coach House spend time with the garden team during there retreat. This is also possible for hire groups.

The Percy Cane Garden

Thanks to investment from the Trust and funding from Devon Gardens Trust, the Percy Cane Garden has been refreshed into a place where fragrant tea & tisane herbs grow.

Head Gardener Bryony Middleton has preserved Cane's Italianate look, with the incredible view to the River Dart, re-planting the quartered beds with a variety of herbal plants which will support retreatant's journeys while they stay at Sharpham. Find out more here.

Woodland Garden

Woodland Garden at Sharpham House

We do not know when the Woodland Garden was established, however, the Ash family developed and extended it in the 1960s and 70s. The lower part of it was a Victorian pinetum and there are still several fine specimen trees there. In the last few years, we have removed large areas of overgrown Rhododendron Ponticum and Cherry Laurel and are currently redesigning some of the newly opened up areas.



We have planted two orchards since 2000. It is estimated the Devon has lost 90% of its traditional orchards. Grand Sultan, Sops in Wine and Doll's Eye are just some of the lovely quirky and playful names of the apple varieties that grow here. We have recently extended an orchard and will replant in the winter.