Pretty spring gardens to visit in Hertfordshire
PUBLISHED: 14:19 27 March 2018 | UPDATED: 15:07 03 April 2018
Go on a blossom hunt this month as trees heavy with blooms, early flowers and bulbs in profusion burst forth in Herts gardens
It’s that time of year in the garden that really can be described as joyous. The triggers of spring release the huge energy stored in trees, shrubs and bulbs and the resulting colour, form and fragrance are a delight to us and a life-giver to many creatures. Here are five gardens open for the National Garden Scheme that are a must for gardeners and for anyone needing a lift after the drab days of winter.
Hare Street Road, Buntingford SG9 0AA
Early spring is a favourite time in the garden at Alswick Hall. Spread over five acres and set against the backdrop of a listed Tudor hall, the gardens are inspirational for their range of planting schemes. They feature traditional herbaceous borders mixed with shrubs for year-round interest as well as a wildflower flower meadow, a woodland walk, a large kitchen garden, a rockery and two natural ponds. April sees masses of late daffodils, camassia and early tulips mixed with spring blossom from the orchards and specimen trees. Tulips are planted in their thousands each autumn in the four large parterre beds to create a colourful and cheery display. There are also lots of containers in the garden planted with tulips and bulbs to enjoy.
Open Sunday April 15 midday-4pm. Admission £5, children free. Homemade teas and hog roast.
St Paul’s Walden Bury
Whitwell SG4 8BP
Now is the time to discover seasonal displays of daffodils, irises, magnolias, woodland peonies, banks of cowslips and wildflowers in this spectacular formal Grade I listed woodland garden, originally laid out in 1720 and once the childhood home of the Queen Mother. Return a bit later in the season to see bluebells in the woods and rhododendron species from the Himalayas and China making an impressive flowering display.
Open on the following Sundays: April 15, May 13, June 10 from 2-7pm. Admission £5, children £1. Homemade teas.
22 Hitchin Road, Letchworth SG6 3LT
A spectacular and colourful display of bulbs beckons at this charming Letchworth garden, along with alliums in bud and wisteria coming into flower. This space has lots of interesting and contemporary features including large stones set in gravel with grasses and sculpture, and a water rill with mirrored area and acers, topiary and emerging hostas. An old pear tree supports a rambling clematis montana and around the lawn are magnolias, wallflowers and more tulips in bloom.
Open Friday 20 April 20, 5.30-8.30pm with wine, and Sunday April 22, 11am-5pm with homemade teas. Admission £5, children free.
Amwell Lane, Wheathampstead AL4 8EA
Enjoy the delightful and fragrant blossom of apple, pear and plum in this large orchard with mown paths meandering through long grass past gnarled fruit trees. The grass has naturalised plantings of daffodils followed by cow parsley when the fruit blossom is out, while bees make their home in the orchard hives taking advantage of the abundant late spring food source. This informal garden of approximately two and a half acres also has tulips, peonies and perennials in the borders, bringing additional colour and interest, plus a woodland area.
Open Sunday April 22 from 2-5pm with homemade teas. Admission £4, children free. Refreshments in aid of Hope and Homes for Children.
Stanstead Abbotts SG12 8BX
Ten acres of garden provide woodland walks, wildflower areas with hawthorn and dog roses in flower, spring bulbs and flowers in borders and blossoming orchards. The 90-year-old peony border will be coming into flower and there’s a Victorian conservatory to explore. All surrounded by views of the Lea Valley.
Open Sunday April 29 from 10am-5pm with homemade teas. Admission £5, children free.
For further information on these gardens and the many others open for the National Garden Scheme this spring, see the website ngs.org.uk