College Gardens

St Hilda’s grounds have a hallowed history. It stretches back to the Middle Ages, when Edmund Rich, the first Oxford Don to be made a saint, used to wander through Cowley fields.

Riverside walk by South Building, St Hilda's CollegeRiverside walk by South Building, St Hilda's CollegeRiverside walk in South Garden, St Hilda's CollegeSt Hilda's South Garden in springtimeSt Hilda's South Garden in springtimeFirst colour in the Suffragette Border, Hall GardenFirst colour in the Suffragette Border, Hall GardenHall Garden, St Hilda's CollegeSt Hilda's rose gardenFritillaries in the wild-flower meadow, St Hilda's College

We have ambitious plans to develop our gardens. In 2018, we are creating a Suffragette Border in Hall Garden to mark the 100th anniversary of the first women winning the right to vote. Our new border will add colour and scent to a relaxed and quiet outdoor space for College members and guests. It will be full of purple and white plants, including asters, erigeron (the darkest of all dunkelstealles), penstemon (sour grapes), anenomes, and clematises. We expect to see quick growth over the summer and that the borders will soon be full of the suffragette colours. Some evergreen plants will give year-round colour.

The wall flower bed at the end of Hall Garden is being developed as our Blossom Border, to honour the Japanese connection already present in the Prunus mume and hawthorn trees. We have added hydrangea, anenomes, daphnes, and wisteria. The beds towards South Garden reflect our suffragette theme and our riverside walk outside South Building is full of seasonal colour.

Our rose garden was created in memory of Winifred Moberley, Principal of St Hilda's from 1919 - 1928, by the Old Students' Association. The bird bath in the rose garden is engraved with her initials, WHM. The garden was restored and replanted in 2011, thanks to a gift from our alumna, Margaret Bliss, née Massey Stewart, (Biochemistry, 1852).

Our new planting is designed to encourage butterflies and bees. We include many native plants in our plans, and in May each year, our wildflower meadow is full of fritillaries.