Monthly Archives: August 2018

A Garden’s Episcopal Past

Just a 10-minute walk from the Putney Bridge Underground, Fulham Palace  was acquired by Bishop Waldhere around the year 700 and served as a residence for the Bishop of London for over 12 centuries. Its stunning gardens boast a history no less episcopal. The most celebrated gardening bishop was Henry Compton (1632-1713), who developed a famous collection of hardy and exotic plants that gave the garden world significance. The first magnolia in Europe was grown at the palace, and other species were planted such as the cork oak, the black walnut and maples. But the most famous inhabitant (a Great Tree of London approximately 500 years old) is an evergreen oak purportedly planted in the 16th century by Bishop Grindal. The surviving layout is mainly 19th century with an earlier walled garden and some 18th century landscaping.