The Woodland Walk in Spring.
Visitors will brave any weather in February to see snowdrops in their thousands. But, as summer approaches, a poor forecast will put off all but the most dedicated garden visitor. Undaunted, this elite group of visitors know that spring weather offers the forecasters no guarantees and a glimpse of sunshine or soft rain can illuminate the awakening landscape with heart stopping beauty.
Nature gives us thousands more bulbs in every shape and colour and the display is every bit as enticing as late winter. Add the birdsong, the green vegetation and a warm tearoom and I am amazed that anyone can keep away. I don’t have to, of course, I can see the changes every day and they come thick and fast.
Now, the woodland walk unfurls in an unstoppable succession of growth and flower power. Dog’s mercury, feverfew and grey-green snowdrop foliage cover the ground and give a verdant backdrop to our bulbs; narcissus, hyacinths and imperial fritillaries. Weaving through these beauties are perennials including scented wild violets, the hellebores in their third MONTH of flowering and brunnera which creates a haze of forget-me-not blue.
They have only this time to make their presence felt before they have to give way to the Aquilegias and foxgloves. Every day is a changing display of colour, scent and form.
There are chaffinches who hop and call in the big black walnut, still bare of foliage. They are easier to spot than the quiet treecreepers who search the fissured bark for insects. I’d love to know if their view from above is as good as ours as we walk along the winding path flanked by the shrubbery and woodland walk towards the Cedar Meadow. Another story is unfolding here too.