Picton Castle and Gardens

Gift shop reopening

Our lovely gift shop has been open for a week and we have lots of new and exciting stock on offer. I think everyone has missed a bit of retail therapy while non-essential shops have been closed. This year has highlighted to us just how important it is to support small, local businesses so we have sourced some lovely quality, locally produced food products for our shelves and we would love to tell you all about them.

We now stock delicious handcrafted fudge made in the heart of Pembrokeshire from the Fudge Foundry. The Fudge Foundry uses the finest ingredients and perfect blend of flavours to create unique, rich, creamy and extremely moreish fudge. We have lots of flavours in stock such as Pembrokeshire Sea salted caramel, dark orange chocolate and traditional vanilla fudge so there is something to suit every taste.

If you prefer spicy over sweet then we have some delicious chilli sauces in stock for you. The Pembrokeshire Chilli Farm has built an enviable reputation for producing a wide range of superb chilli sauces, jams and spices. They only use their own Pembrokeshire grown chillies to guarantee the best flavours and heat. They are proud to say that all their Chilli sauces are “grown, not flown”, reducing their carbon emissions and helping the environment . Some of the hotter sauces really do pack a punch so be warned; they are not for the faint of heart! Al fresco dining and barbeques are going to be more popular than ever this summer so make sure you buy some of these local chili sauces to guarantee your barbeque food is the envy of all of your friends!

The Pembrokeshire Sea Salt Company’s award-winning, hand-harvested sea salt flakes taste as pure and clean as the tranquil, clear waters of the Pembrokeshire Coast. They offer a wide range of sea salt infusions such as wild garlic, chili and Sichuan pepper. They use ingredients that are sourced as locally as possible and everything is produced sustainably, using renewable resources and sold in packaging that is reusable, recyclable or compostable. The Pembrokeshire Sea salt company also produces some exciting pampering products and scented candles in their Cwtch Body and Sole range. Their Spring Jasmine candles evoke a warm day in our beautiful gardens so you can have a bit of Picton luxury in your own home.

Introducing pickled and fermented foods to your diet provides you with many health benefits. That’s why these foods have become extremely popular in recent years. Pleasantly Pickled prides itself in making high quality, homemade products using fresh and locally grown ingredients wherever possible. We have stocked a selection of their wonderful Pembrokeshire made chutneys, jams, pickles and sauces that can add flavour to any dish.

Avid gardeners will also be pleased to hear that we have a wide selection of plants on sale . Our visitors are always surprised at how reasonably priced our plants are and we often have emails from customers telling us how wonderfully our plants have grown in their gardens. A walk around our gardens will inspire you to work on your own outdoor space and we have a selection of tools and garden items on sale too, so there is no excuse. Why not try to recreate your favourite area of the garden at home?

We have certainly had some unusual weather so far this month. Many visitors have been concerned about some of our fabulous spring and summer plants and have been asking questions about the damage done to our gunneras, located near the ticket office. Gunneras are commonly known as Giant Rhubarb and are quite an impressive sight as you enter the gardens, some stalks grow up to 2.5 metres in height and the leaves are almost as broad! They are always such a talking point each year and they seem to spring up so quickly that it feels as though you can see them growing in front of your very eyes. It is said that if you put your ears to them you can hear them creaking as they grow at this time of year! The warm weather that we had in late March encouraged the gunnera stalks to shoot up and the leaves began to open. However, some damage was done to the current growth during the unusual cold snap we had last week. We had frosty mornings, hail storms and dry, cold winds that have caused the current leaves to turn brown and crispy. Our Head gardener says there is nothing to worry about though, this happened back when we had the Beast from the East in 2018 and this hardy herbaceous perennial was able to come back fighting with an incredible bloom that year, so fingers crossed it will be the same this year!

The East Garden is looking fabulous at the moment so we really recommend you take a stroll around the area if you visit. This is often a part of the garden that people miss out on and I have been told by one season ticket holder that they were a member for an entire year before they discovered the area. Myrtle walk has become one of our most instagrammable spots. This corridor of impressive trees catches the light beautifully at this time of year so we recommend bringing your camera and snapping your family here! If you do post any photos on social media please do tag us with #pictoncastlegardens because we really love to see your photos!

We know that spending time in our gardens is a great way to lift your mood and leave you feeling good. Now, more than ever before, people are recognising the benefits of exercising in and connecting with nature for personal health and wellbeing and that’s why the RHS has made Feel Good its theme for 2021.
Picton Castle & Gardens are pleased to be taking part in the prestigious RHS Partner Garden of the Year 2021 and it is down to garden visitors to vote for the RHS Partner Garden that really makes them Feel Good.
Voting will open in August and we would love it if you could vote for Picton Castle & Gardens to spread the word on our wonderful gardens and make others feel good!


Kate Barrett

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