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Visiting the garden at Chirk Castle

View of the castle at springtime at Chirk Castle, Wrexham
View of the castle at springtime at Chirk Castle, Wrexham | © National Trust Images/Annapurna Mellor

Indulge your senses and refresh your spirit with a gentle wander amongst the scents and seasonal colours of the rare shrubs and flowers in our lovely 5.5 acre garden.

Spring highlights in the garden

Spring is a wonderful time to visit the garden at Chirk Castle as fresh buds burst into bloom. The daffodils make a fabulous sight. Varieties include Narcissus cyclamineus and Narcissus King Alfred. One of the best places to spot them is opposite the long border in the meadow area affectionately known as ‘The Daffodil Lawn’, but they can also be seen along Lime Tree Avenue near the Hercules statue from where you’ll also get a fantastic view of the castle.

The blossoms also start to emerge, you can’t miss the Prunus Kanzan ‘Cherry Kanzan’ tree on the lawn with its delicate pink petals – it makes for a stunning photo opportunity in the spring sunshine.

Look out for the Early Spring Forsythia, renowned for its vibrant yellow flowers in early spring. A variety of Rhododendrons, Azaleas, magnolias, camellias and Pieris Japonica can also be seen as you meander along the pathways throughout the 5.5 acre garden.

The handkerchief tree Davidia Involucrate also begins to flower. The creamy white petals of this rare tree, which is native to China, look just like handkerchiefs fluttering in the gentle breeze. Other highlights include the vibrant Chilean lantern tree and the fire bushes.

The Pleasure Ground Wood, a formal area of woodland next to the main garden, becomes carpeted with Bluebells and Foxgloves.

Flowering wisteria in the courtyard of Chirk Castle, Wrexham
Flowering wisteria in the courtyard of Chirk Castle, Wrexham | © National Trust Images/Annapurna Mellor

Garden history

The first formal garden was laid out by Sir Thomas Myddelton II in 1653, following contemporary French examples. The next major alterations were in 1764 when Richard Myddelton commissioned the landscape architect William Emes to remodel the gardens and parkland. Emes made substantial changes, moving fences, walls, pathways, and planting vast lawns and thousands of trees.

In the 19th century yew topiary, hedges and wrought iron gates were introduced, and then under the guidance of Lord Howard de Walden in the early twentieth century the celebrated gardener Norah Lindsay created a magnificent herbaceous border on the Upper Lawn.

The gardens were neglected during the Second World War until they were almost single-handedly revived by Lady Margaret Myddelton, creating the colourful planting scheme that our dedicated team of three full-time gardeners and garden volunteers maintain.

Things to see in the garden

Long Border

This curved border has three seasonal areas and is filled with shrubs and herbaceous plants. Lady Margaret Myddelton planted it after the Second World War as a low-maintenance way to ensure seasonal colour and scent.

Hawk House

Built in 1854 to an E.W. Pugin design and there used to be an 18th-century orangery on the same site. Originally a conservatory, Lord Howard de Walden added a thatched roof, to house birds of prey.

Shrub garden

Late spring rhododendrons smell wonderful after a spring shower and an early summer highlight is the handkerchief tree with its elegant white bracts. In the autumn you can see rich toasty colours throughout.


During his 18th-century work on the parkland, William Emes added several 'ha-ha' to provide unobstructed views of the sweeping parkland and fields beyond, whilst keeping the parkland animals out. There are great views from the ha-ha at the bottom of the garden.

Rose Garden

Lady Margaret Myddelton was very fond of roses - especially scented ones. Many of her favourite varieties included Dearest (soft pink), Allgold (bright golden colour) and Elizabeth of Glamis (salmon pink).

We have many roses around the garden from tall climbers like Rosa ‘Madame D’Arblay with soft pink carnation-like flowers, to Rosa ‘Blanc Double de Coubert’ - a white shrubby variety, as well as Rosa ’Golden Celebration’ and Rosa ‘Jubilee Celebration’.

The Laundry

The historic laundry behind the South Range can be accessed from the gardens. First built in 1790 it was in use up until the Second World War and was restored and opened to the public in 2006.

Pleasure Ground Wood

This formal area of woodland is right next to the main garden and is bisected by pathways arranged to provide easy and peaceful walking routes. In February there is an incredible display of snowdrops, followed in turn by bluebells and foxgloves.

Kitchen garden

A small Kitchen garden is slowly being developed behind the Squash Court near Home Farm, here we have a small orchard and vegetable plots with a range of vegetables in season that are sold through the retail shop.

A path lined with shrubs, rhododendrons and other spring blooms at Chirk Castle, Wrexham, Wales
A path lined with shrubs, rhododendrons and other spring blooms at Chirk Castle, Wrexham, Wales | © National Trust Images/Annapurna Mellor

Seasonal planting at Chirk

We plant everything from large shrubs to the smallest rockery at Chirk Castle. Look out for some seasonal plants across the seasons.


From large shrubs to the smallest rockery plant of a few inches tall, rhododendrons give a regular display with all the colours of the rainbow. We have the larger varieties ‘arboreum’ and many hardy hybrids in the Wild Garden and Shrub Garden.


A different type of rhododendron. We have mainly deciduous types with scented flowers in whites, oranges and pinks and Japanese evergreen types on the rockery with primarily pink flowers.

Daffodils and narcissus

From the tiny Narcissus cyclamineus to the large-flowered Narcissus King Alfred. Spot them in the lime avenue and long border areas.


Lady Magaret Myddelton was very fond of the iris. She liked mainly blue forms and these are prominent on the Long Border. You can see a number of varieties including Iris siberica and the small Iris innominata in the Shrub Garden, and Iris stylosa, the winter flowering species on the Long Border.


Angel’s Fishing Rods or Wand Flower are a prominent feature of the garden from July to September. The bells vary in colour from pale pink to purple and arch above grass-like foliage.


We have numerous varieties all with their broad leaves throughout the summer. To the envy of our visitors, our gritty loam tends to discourage slugs so ours remain hole free.


Here are the most striking varieties to look out for: A. September Charm, A. Whirlygig - double white form, A. Konigin Charlotte - semi double pink and A. Honorine Jobert - glowing single white.

The East Front and yew topiary at Chirk Castle, Wrexham, Wales

Discover more at Chirk Castle

Find out when Chirk Castle is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

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