This Spring enjoy the Pleasure Gardens at Blenheim Palace. The Pleasure Gardens have been especially designed for younger members of the family. Discover the Marlborough Maze, the world's second largest symbolic yew hedge maze and the Butterfly House which has over 200 butterflies inside. The Lavender Garden is specifically set out to enhance the native butterflies and you can spot plenty of nectar enriched plants which are grown in this area.
Spring is also the best time to view The Italian Garden. Redesigned in the early 20th century by the 9th Duke of Marlborough on the advice of his architect Duchêne. Formal symmetrical scrollwork parterres in box and yew replaced the earlier scheme of carpet bedding, and a new bronze fountain by American sculptor Waldo Story was installed. Look out for the precise nature of The Italian Garden's box-hedges – each one trimmed using spirit-levels, string and many hours of dedication! Spring brings the arrival of colour with the vast urns being planted with Seville tulips, which are tall, elegant and a vibrant red colour. Dutch Master daffodils flower in abundance in the beds in this area too.
Summer is the time to visit the Water Terraces, which were constructed between 1925 and 1930. The terraces are reminiscent of the Parterre d'Eau at Versailles. On the lowest terrace stands the scale model made by Bernini for his famous fountain in the Piazza Navona in Rome. See beds of fragrant 'Pascali' roses, which flower from late May into early Autumn and 12 vast terracotta urns which are decorated each Summer with 'Canna's, a deep orange free-flowering lily which stand a metre or so in height. Visitors can enjoy the Water Terraces whilst dining in the Water Terraces Café, which features a seasonal menu with produce sourced locally, including ingredients grown on the Blenheim Palace Estate.
Don't miss the Rose Garden in June, which is contained within a circular walk, arched over by slender hoops supporting climbing roses of a delicate pink. The central statue is surrounded by symmetrical beds of roses that form a delightful display of floral beauty. From the Rose Garden, take a short walk past the hidden Temple of Flora and on to the newly restored Grand Cascade - designed by 'Capability' Brown in the 1760s.