Gardening leaves Camilla creaking, yet she finds it 'therapeutic'

Gardening leaves Camilla ‘creaking’! Yet she still finds it therapeutic alongside her busy schedule as the newly crowned Queen

  • Camilla is as passionate about gardening as the King. But there’s a price to pay…
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King Charles is known as a dedicated gardener – so much so that his immaculately tended grounds at Highgrove in Gloucestershire attract thousands of visitors each year. 

Yet in Camilla he has found a partner who is equally green-fingered – even if, as she revealed yesterday, her exertions sometimes leave her aching.

‘I love gardening,’ she said in Armagh during a two-day visit to Northern Ireland by the King and Queen. ‘I’m a passionate gardener. And it’s very therapeutic.

‘But I always stay too long. Everything creaks and groans.’ 

Camilla, 75, has her own garden at Ray Mill House to tend, but is thought also to have had a hand in the gardens at their Scottish home, Birkhall, near Balmoral. 

 Camilla surrounded by flowers at Ray Mill, her personal home in Wiltshire, in July 2020

Queen Camilla meeting well-wishers as she visits Enniskillen Castle on her visit to Northern Ireland 

Queen Camilla smelling David Austin roses at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show

Camilla poses in her garden for the 75th birthday at Ray Mill House in Wiltshire

At the start of the week, we saw both King and Queen at the Chelsea Flower Show. 

Camilla revealed something of her interest in a 2022 documentary for Country Life magazine filmed at Highgrove

She tells the camera how much she loves the whole experience, including the weeding. 

 ‘You can go and garden, and you just become completely involved in what you’re doing and what you’re planting,’ she says.

When King Charles bought the 18th Century home in 1980, the grounds were overgrown.

However, over the past four decades, with the help of highly regarded gardeners like Rosemary Verey and Miriam Rothschild, Charles and Camilla have transformed them.

Not only are there large numbers of rare trees, flowers and heirloom seeds, but there is also a wild garden, a formal garden and a walled kitchen garden.

Camilla enjoying the scenery during a visit to Westonbirt, The National Arboretum  in 2020 

A young Camilla Parker Bowles  gardening at her home in Corsham, Wilshire, in 1993

Charles and Camilla planting in raised beds during a visit to Lower Moor Farm Nature Reserve in Malmesbury, Wiltshire, in 2007

Camilla helping guerrilla gardener Richard Reynoldso harvest lavender on a roundabout in central London as part of a tour of urban gardens in September 2011

The property is also modern and environmentally-friendly as possible, being fitted with solar panels and a natural sewage filtering system, no doubt on the King’s demands. 

Camilla said in the documentary: ‘[You can] do a bit of weeding and you can be very creative, it’s just one of the most relaxing things anyone can do. Go into the garden, get on with it.’

Gardening expert and founder of Luxury Screens, Suhail Patel, told MailOnline: ‘Being surrounded by plants, fresh air, and the sounds of nature has a calming effect on the mind, which can lead to a sense of peace and well-being. 

‘And other studies have shown it can also reduce high blood pressure and improve physical fitness.’

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