Horticulturists and sightseers alike can now explore the National Trust’s gardens whenever they want thanks to a new free iPhone app.
The app includes listings and descriptions of all 150 of the conservation charity’s gardens in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, as well as a handy browse and search facility to help users find their nearest one. Seasonal highlights – such as autumn colour – will be flagged, as well as recommended places to visit.
Users can also view a selection of greener gardening videos, such as how to compost, and access other handy propagation hints and tips.
Developed by the Trust’s in-house team, the free gardens app is available to download from the iTunes app store at:
In addition to all the free garden information, users can also download an individual guide to one of the Trust’s most iconic outdoor sites, Stourhead in Wiltshire, and experience its fabulous autumn colour in a totally new way. In the coming year an app will become available for another Trust garden gem, Cragside at Rothbury in the heart of Northumberland.
The specially designed Stourhead guide contains an interactive map featuring some of the most interesting plants, plus points of interest such as the famous Palladian Bridge; an augmented reality experience to identify different species of shrubs and trees, and their distance from you, even if they are slightly obscured from view, as well as stunning photography.
More than 20 more detailed garden guides will come on stream over the next 12 months in the same format.
Mike Calnan, head of gardens at the National Trust, said: “The app is a fantastic new way to explore our iconic gardens.
“It is easy to use and packed full of useful information and beautiful imagery giving users a tantalising glimpse of what they can expect.
“We hope it will encourage people to visit National Trust gardens more frequently and to explore some of our less well known properties.”
This latest innovation follows the successful launch of the National Trust iPhone app last year, which is currently number one in the top 10 travel app chart and has a 4.5 star rating. To date it has been downloaded over 500,000 times.
Emily Heaver, head of digital content and user experience at the National Trust, added: “Focussing on one particular subject has allowed us to really explore the interactive possibilities of mobile apps and how they can enhance a visit or inspire people in their own gardens.
“We are lucky at the Trust to have access to teams of experts in many fields and we want that passion and knowledge to be at everyone’s fingertips. We are already excited about developing similar apps for subjects such as wildlife and art.”
Find out more here: http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/iphone