West Dean Gardens has an impressive collection of thirteen
working Victorian glasshouses built by Foster and Pearson. There is
always colour on display from the large collection of plants
including exotic plants, orchids, strawberry plants, figs,
nectarines, peaches, gourds, grapes and melons.
Urgent Glasshouse Appeal: For further information or to donate click here.
The splendid glasshouses were all built between 1890 and 1900 and were completely derelict before their restoration in the early 1990s. They are magnificent examples of Victorian craft and ingenuity.
They are repainted on a four year cycle; the exteriors over summer, when the weather is kinder, and the interiors over winter, when the glasshouses can be emptied. In addition, they are hand scrubbed from top to bottom, inside and out, each winter, a process that takes two gardeners two months to complete.
Despite this, the glasshouses are beginning to show
their age and we are undertaking a programme of refurbishment /
restoration to ensure they will be working for many years in the
future. To find out how you can help click here.
The glasshouses are heated by a woodchip burning boiler which also heats the College and associated buildings using woodchips produced from West Dean Estate's commercial forestry.