"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Blossom, Butterflies and Tulips at Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens

I spent a wonderful few hours at lunchtime today wandering around Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens. Although I have only been visiting on a regular basis over the last 16months, I have been going to the Gardens occasionally ever since they first opened to the public and every year they just get better and better and more beautiful.

Lady Bridgeman's Garden

One of the stone "pineapples" in the Melon Ground

A few photos of some of the many varieties of tulips which are at their best at the moment.

The fruit trees in the North Orchard are coming into blossom and the daffodils have been replaced by a lovely display of cowslips

Looking towards the Green House

Espaliers (looking towards the North West Pier)

I went a walk around the "Extra Grounds" just outside the more formal walled garden. Bluebells are flowering in the Nut Ground

The North Pond where I disturbed a drake mallard

More cowslips

Despite the fact that, although it was sunny, it was colder and windier today there were a lot of butterflies about - speckled wood, small tortoiseshell, orange tip, peacock and I saw my first holly blues of the year.

The area of habitat shown in the photo below was ideal for butterflies, holly (for the pair of holly blues I saw there) and a large patch of nettles. A few plants of honesty were proving very attractive to a male and female orange tip.

Orange Tip (male)

Orange Tip female - the females lack the orange tips to the wings but share the beautiful lichen-like camouflage pattern on the hind wings

Speckled Wood

The beautiful snakeshead fritillaries around the West Pond are now in full bloom

The fruit trees are also beginning to blossom in the New Orchard

Back in the Walled Garden

The Lower Wilderness

In the Upper Wilderness the lilacs are just starting to flower

and there are great displays of tulips and more blossom

Castle Bromwich Hall being nicely renovated by the new owner - no idea though when the new hotel will be opening

There were quite a few birds around the garden today - the highlight being a jay (a new species for my Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens birdlist). I'll list the species I have seen there on the blog when I manage to select a few less photos on a future visit!

I have now seen 7 species of butterfly this year and the garden list for 2011 now stands at 5 after seeing my first speckled wood of the year last Sunday in the garden.

Stop press news re: garden blue tits - we checked the nestbox camera today for the first time since the weekend and nest material is beginning to be taken in and one of the birds (I assume the female) is roosting in the box tonight. They have started nest building a bit earlier than last year when it was the 18th April. I will try and persuade my husband to put some video from the nestbox camera on to a disc and try and upload some footage to my blog at the weekend.


Laura said...

This looks like a lovely place indeed. Nice photos & post :)

Ragged Robin said...

Thanks so much Laura. The photos of the garden at Fenton House on your blog remind me very much of Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens.