Gardeners at Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens, near York, had to get their stepladders out this week to measure giant Echiums growing in the garden.
The plants, found in the Italian border at the National Trust-owned property, have reached a towering 4.3 meters high(14 feet) – the same height as a female giraffe.
Kate Wilkinson, the gardener tasked with measuring the plants, said: “It wasn’t as straightforward as simply getting a tape-measure out. I had to climb a stepladder, and even then it wasn’t enough. With the measuring tape attached to the end of a bamboo cane, I was just about able to reach the top of these amazing plants”.
Echiums typically grow to between 2.5 and 4 meters (7 to 14 feet) and can take up to two years to reach their full height. Some of the flowers on the Echiums at Beningbrough are still to open, meaning they could still be growing, helped by this year’s mild and dry winter and spring.
Kate added: “These are certainly the biggest of their kind that I’ve seen. There might be gardens in warmer parts of the country that can beat ours, but I think we’re in contention for northern champions at least!”
For more information about Beningbrough, visit nationaltrust.org.uk/beningbrough