Sheringham Park Flowering Update (May 4 2017)

Rhododendron loderi King George in flower

Spring is a time of change. A walk through the wild garden at this time of year reveals changes on an almost daily basis. This is the first of planned weekly updates during this period. Some species are flowering early, while others are a little late. Overall we would say the display is still on course to peak from mid-May to early June.

Rhododendrons and azaleas

The rhododendrons in early May bring a variety of colour to the wild garden. Outside the Bower the yellow flowering Queen Elizabeth II will catch you eye.

The enormous white trumpet like flowers of loderi King George can be seen at a numbers of spots along the main drive, as well as along the ramblers’ route. The fragrance of the orange and yellow azaleas will stop you in your tracks, if their attractive colours have not already done so.

Red is well represented in the wild garden with arboreum amongst the largest of our varieties growing as tall as our rhododendron viewing towers and dominating the entrance to the secret garden.  The deep coloured varieties of Doncaster and Grace Seabrooke are also showing well.

A number of colourful rhododendrons and azaleas light up a clearing halfway down the main drive combining nicely with flowering bluebells.

Towards the end of the drive is an area called ‘Evelyn’s Glade’ where the rhododendron Mrs G W Leek draws the eye flowering opposite a specimen of the previously mentioned loderi King George.

Rhododendron Mrs G W Leek will grab your attention towards the end of the main drive.
Flowering rhododendron Mrs G W Leek along the main drive.

More highlights from the Wild Garden

It is always worth visiting the secret garden (staff in the visitor centre will be happy to share its location) where the purple flowered magnolia soulangianai the star of the show. Also in flower is the delicate dipelta and 3 varieties of enkianthus, as well as a styrax tree and a number of rhododendrons

Both snowdrop trees are in flower along the tree trail and the flowers (technically bracts) of the handkerchief tree are just starting to show and should be at their best within the next few days.

Two snowdrop trees can be seen flowering in the wild garden
Snowdrop tree in floweer

Bluebells

A number of patches of can be seen throughout the estate. On Weybourne Heath the bluebells flank the paths and in some places the white flowers of greater stitchwort are mixed in providing a nice contrast of colours.

Bluebells and greater stitchwort provide a nice combination along the paths of Weybourne Heath.
Bluebells and greater stitchwort in flower on Weybourne Heath

Parkland

The star species in this area at the moment is undoubtedly cowslips (also in the Bower) putting on their best display for many years. Primroses are still providing good colour along the parkland edges and buttercups are starting to come through, which we hope will provide a carpet of yellow in the coming weeks.

Cowslips are currently putting on a very good display in the parkland
Cowslips at Sheringham park
" This has been an interesting spring, with a spell of very warm sunshine in early April setting off probably one of the best shows of primroses and cowslips I have seen since I moved to Norfolk 17 years ago. "
- Graham Brennan Head Gardener