Downderry Nursery closing

Owners Dr. Simon and Dawn Charlesworth announce their retirement and the closing of the specialist lavender nursery in Kent.

Downderry Nursery
credit:Downderry Nursery

Fuelled by passion, Downderry Nursery expanded from a small back-garden, mail-order venture (10 x 8ft greenhouse) into the country’s leading lavender nursery, exhibiting at all the major shows and supplying some of the best quality lavender plants in the country. The nursery set in a walled garden and field, housed around 200,000 plants, comprising of some 80 cultivars. The Downderry lavender collection was granted Plant Heritage National Plant Collection status.

Announcing the closure on Facebook, the owners said “A big thank you to the many customers who’ve supported us over the years. It’s been quite an experience creating and running this bijou artisan nursery and an amazing journey from the little 8’ x 10’ greenhouse in the back garden. We’re thankful to have been blessed with a great working life in a beautiful part of the English countryside”.

Speaking to the Dirt, Simon explained that the Downderry rosemary collection has been moved “just up the road” to Great Comp Garden where its being cared for by William Dyson. The lavender collection will also be moved, but due the sheer volume of plants, including hardy, frost hardy, half hardy and tender lavenders, that move will require “a bit more work”. The lavenders in the walled garden will remain in place until they expire.

The business is currently trading in the remaining stock online but no more plants will be propagated. The e-commerce part of the website will be disabled by March 2024, although the website will remain live for visitors to view for information.