Discover spring delights in the garden at Charlecote
Over 90% of us say that 'just looking at a garden lifts our mood', according to the Royal Horticultural Society, and you’ll always discover something to cheer you in our gardens whenever you visit.
The bulbs that our volunteer gardeners planted last autumn are coming into flower now and they are brightening up the borders and pots. Now that the apricot, apple and pear blossom blooms in Green Court, the bees are happy.
Take a stroll around the gardens that Mary Elizabeth Lucy loved so dearly in Victorian times and you’ll find our gardeners – staff and volunteers – at work, whatever the weather. They’ll tell you more if you want to chat, or just take a seat and enjoy the results of all their hard work.
Mary Elizabeth’s passion for plants still influences the gardens. Her formal riverside parterre was carefully reinstated twenty years ago and twice a year our gardeners skilfully co-ordinate a new design and organise the back-breaking planting of thousands of new spring plants.
The parterre is always a great spot for a photograph - do let us know what you think and send us your photos on social media.
Now known as the woodland garden, Mary Elizabeth’s Wilderness flourishes beyond the long border. Her Victorian visitors – like our visitors today - would have been entranced by rare and unusual shade-loving plants and ferns in this tranquil haven.
Our hellebore collection and flowering shrubs make this a real plant-lovers' delight - see how many plants you don't recognise here!
The little thatched summerhouse next to the Orangery tea-room is too fragile for us to be able to open it to visitors.
However, many visitors ask about the origins of this delightful little building (which Mary Elizabeth Lucy had built as a playhouse for her grandchildren) so our volunteer photographer takes a look inside here.
You can see how the Lucy family influence still prevails in the gardens today with the topiary in Green Court. The present baronet, Sir Edmund Fairfax-Lucy created the formal design based on three-dimensional mathematical relationships between the house, the gatehouse and this lawned forecourt.
The ancient wisteria on the house comes in to flower in late spring - we believe it to be around 200 years old which would make it one of the first wisterias planted in this country after plant-hunters brought seeds back from China.
Take a look in the Spinney shed where we put information about the plants that visitors are asking about at the moment. If you've spotted a plant you'd like to know more about, you can contact us via social media too.
Don't forget to browse in our Avenue plant centre next to the car park. We're stocking many of the plants you'll see today, and every plant you buy helps us to look after our gardens.
We have a team of volunteers who count and monitor the butterflies - see if you can spot an early yellow brimstone today; and don’t forget to look out for our friendly robins, happy to hop about close to visitors’ feet.