It's rhododendron time! Each spring towards the end of May into the beginning of June, thousands of rhododendron shrubs burst into bloom covering the estate in a sea of purple with pockets of pinks and whites.
The impressive show of rhododendrons is complemented by bursts of azaleas dotted around the grounds, giving off a beautiful scent and showcasing vivid yellow and bright orange flowers.
The rhododendrons are affectionately known as rhodie’s by the team at Cragside and the gardeners have created a 'Rhodie Ramble' through the Rock Garden which signs to highlight some of the unqiue rhododendron's in the collection as you meander through the web of paths in front of the House. For that perfect picture, head to the Iron Bridge where you will see the House sat on top of this colourful floral display.
A must visit for family photos and lot of fun is the labyrinth. Adventure through this flowering maze of tangled rhododendron and discover some of its hidden treasures as you explore. Sit in the Story-tellers chair and say hello to William the wizard. Only those skilled enough will find Nelly’s Den at its centre.
The Carriage Drive is a great way to see this spectacular display on four wheels. Hop in your car and follow this 6-mile circular route to the very top of the estate. As you turn the corners of the estate drive, you'll see flashes of colour across the rugged landscape ahead. There are lots of places to stop for photos and more discovery on foot too.
The banks of Nelly’s Moss are covered in rhododendron. Nelly’s Moss offers a flat walk around this duo of man-made lakes. Once an integral part of Lord Armstrong’s hydro-electrity system, it’s now home a wildlife, including frogs, toads, the resident heron and a family of Greylag geese. Find a picnic bench and enjoy the views of the lake surrounded with purple flowers.
Join in the fun of #RhododendronWatch. Every year we fill the Cragside social media channels with photos and updates about the estate’s famous rhodies. Join in the fun and tag us with your photos using @NTcragside on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and #rhododednronwatch.