Spring flowers at Polesden Lacey

Now that the days are getting longer, it’s the flowers that herald the arrival of spring in the garden. Read on to discover the best places to catch daffodils and bluebells in our gardens and the wider estate.

A carpet of colour in the winter garden
Snowdrops and aconites in the Polesden Lacey winter garden
A carpet of colour in the winter garden

 

Snowdrops

These tiny white flowers are hardy, despite their delicate appearance, and they symbolise hope, no doubt due to being the first sign of new life in the midst of winter, reminding us that spring will return. 

Snowdrops typically appear in February, though they can often be found as early as January depending on variations in climate and temperature. 

You’ll notice snowdrops lining Lime Walk leading from Visitor Reception down to the back of the house and the formal gardens. But perhaps the best place to admire the snowdrops is in the Winter Garden, which you’ll find next to Gardeners Cottage in the formal gardens. 

The Winter Garden was designed by Graham Stuart Thomas and boasts a carpet of snowdrops and bright yellow aconites, which grow in the shade of 3 elegant Ironwood trees.

A family wanders in the gardens at Polesden Lacey
A family wanders in the gardens at Polesden Lacey
A family wanders in the gardens at Polesden Lacey

Daffodils 

Move over hot cross buns! In our opinion, there’s no more appropriate symbol for spring than the sunny yellow daffodil. Over the past few years our gardeners have planted over 15,000  bulbs and, come spring, the daffodils bloom in swathes of yellow, cream and orange. 

You can catch them all across the garden here between late February and early May, with the West Lawn, New Lime Walk and Theatre Lawn being particular highlights.

Please help us keep the daffodil displays looking lovely for everyone and discourage younger members of the family from playing amongst the flowers. 

Explore the estate to find some bluebells
A close-up of some bluebells
Explore the estate to find some bluebells

Bluebells 

Bluebells are a wildflower and, as such, you’ll have to walk a little further afield to find them. Within the gardens you’ll find them scattered through Preserve Copse. Otherwise, the best way to find them is by following one of the four way-marked walks across our 1400-acre estate. 

You’re most likely to find the bluebells in the shadier parts of the ancient woodland. Our rangers recommend the Ranmore Common walk, which is way-marked with blue markers and butterflies on the paths. When you find yourself well into the woodland, why not venture off the beaten track to discover patches of these fairy tale flowers?

For extra guidance, why not join our Treasures of Spring ranger-led walk or pick up an estate walks leaflet from Visitor Reception.

 

Irises at Polesden Lacey
Irises at Polesden Lacey
Irises at Polesden Lacey

Irises

Varieties of beautiful irises, name for the goddess of the rainblow, bloom from early spring to early summer. You'll find them in the Spring Borders, Rock Garden, Diary Courtyard and later in the historic Iris Garden. 

Apple blossom in April
A close up of blossom on an apple tree
Apple blossom in April

Apple blossom

In April and May, Home Farm Orchard is filled with blossom. There are 30 different types of apple grown here - desert apples, cooking apples and dual purpose apples. In the autumn, the team will use them in the kitchen. But in spring, why not bring a picnic and find a spot under an apple tree. Just don't forget to take a moment to quietly sit and breathe in the delicate apple blossom fragrance.   
 

Other hotspots for spring flowers...

Spring borders at Polesden Lacey
Spring borders at Polesden Lacey
Spring borders at Polesden Lacey

Spring Borders

Not many gardens are lucky enough to have dedicated beds for spring interest, but here at Polesden Lacey we have a series of four such borders running down from the holiday cottage at the west end of the formal gardens.  Always labelled as the Spring Borders on old plans of the garden, we completely redesigned and replanted them back in autumn 2015.  Although designed to be of interest all year round, they really come into their own from February onwards.  You’ll find trees like the Manchurian Cherry tree (Prunus mackii), shrubs like Winged Spindle (Euonymus alatus) and Euphorbias, as well as a whole host of herbaceous perennials and bulbs to please the eye before summer takes off.

Robin perched on Wisteria at Polesden Lacey, Surrey
Robin perched on Wisteria at Polesden Lacey, Surrey
Robin perched on Wisteria at Polesden Lacey, Surrey

The house borders and containers

The house borders and containers have striking displays of spring flowers with amazing tulip displays, alliums and fritillaria imperialis from late March to early May. At the front of the house, glorious wisteria blooms in May and June. Enjoy a moment to take in their heady perfume. 

Alliums at Polesden Lacey
Alliums at Polesden Lacey
Alliums at Polesden Lacey

The Rose Garden

It’s not just roses stealing the show in The Rose Garden. Before they bloom from June until September, the outer beds will be filled with several varieties of alliums, fritillaria, some new groups of delicate species daffodils and masses of snowdrops and crocus blooms. Look for the fascinating foxtail lilies (Eremurus) in the exotic border on the north side of this area.

Download our Sights of Spring self guided walk

Don't miss a thing