The Gardens at Speke Hall
During lockdown, our team have been working hard on essential checks and tasks in the gardens but that has meant some of our usual routines have had to pause. The gardens might not be quite as pristine as they were last year but well, we all need a haircut right now, don't we?
There's still plenty of glorious colour to be found in the flowerbeds and borders around the grounds though, so please enjoy your visits to Speke Hall, spot some of our summer highlights and spend as much time as you want picnicking and enjoying these beautiful surroundings. Find out more below about what's in bloom and where to find it.
The North Lawn is the ideal spot for striking views of the front of the hall and exploring the paths around the old moat. The lush topiary that has been shaped to perfection by our garden team offers plenty of unexpected angles of the hall's Tudor architecture. Hidden amongst the trees on the path running along the west side of the house is a metasequia glyptstroboides - a rare tree with distinctive bark, once thought to be extinct. Further around the corner onto the North Lawn proper, enjoy the view from the lawn and spend some time in this special place.
As summer arrives, the second flush of roses appear in the Victorian formal rose garden.
Elsewhere on the South Lawn, don't miss the colourful array of rhododendrons along the path - we've got them in every shade! - or the freshly replanted lavender bed for a real scent of summer.
In spring, the volunteer team usually get to work giving everything our fruits and vegetables need to grow big and healthy in the summer. That work hasn't happened this year due to lockdown but we know our garden volunteers are itching to get back in and start growing produce again - hopefully they will be able to soon.
For now, you can look into the Kitchen Garden and see what's in bloom as you walk along the orchard path.
While you're there, soak up all the colours and shades of the beautiful herbaceous border which is glorious in summer. The bees love it!
This hidden oasis in the north west corner of Speke Hall's grounds is currently closed due to its narrow and winding paths. As soon as we can safely reopen it to visitors, we will. For now, imagine a magical place, accessible via a narrow enticing tunnel at one end and a winding path at the other. It can be found just off the North Lawn and will be a lovely place for a quiet walk and moment of contemplation once we're open again.
The Secret Garden is also home to the rare (and previously thought to be extinct) Wollemi pine or dinosaur tree, a species which was in the news in late 2019 when the small area where the tree originates from in Australia was threatened by devastating bushfires. We're very proud to be caring for one of these trees here at Speke Hall.
The Secret Garden was newly restored in 2017 thanks to generous donations from the Alan Evans Memorial Trust, Crosby National Trust Association, Oldham and District National Trust Association and the Chester and District National Trust Association.
Give thanks to Speke's gardeners
Your support helps Speke Hall's garden to grow. Every time you visit and every penny you spend while you're here gives our garden team the support they need to care for this special place. You can dedicate a donation, big or small, to our garden team by clicking here.