Trees In The Garden

All round the garden are interesting trees, particularly maples. On the Front Drive north of the Hall are three large Acer cappadocicum from Turkey, while nearer the East Wing are two very good vigorous young plants of Acer davidii with red new growth, grown from seed collected in China in 1992. The Paper Bark maple, Acer griseum, can be seen in a number of places with its distinctive peeling reddish bark, and there is a splendid old Acer palmatum and Acer nikoense in Silverwood which colour bright red in autumn. Acer capillipes, rufinerve, japonicum, palmatum var dissectum, circinatum, and longipes ssp longipes can all be seen with many others, while there are a number of different old birches of uncertain origin and name, but close to Betula utilis and jacquemontii, with a fine pink barked Betula albosinensis var septemtrionalis below the bottom terrace. Quite a few young birches have also been planted from wild seed, including. utilis, utilis var prattii, ermanii, papyrifera, szechuanica, and jacquemontii.

There is a good example of the Handkerchief Tree, Davidia involucrata (we have just lost another one to honey fungus), south-east of the Hall, and many interesting Sorbus, including a rare Sorbus harrowiana with its distinctively large leaflets, half way down the Front Drive on the south side. Sorbus hupehensis flourishes in a number of places, while the Whitebeams are well represented by a Sorbus. vestita on the path south of Silverwood, as well as other native ones. Opposite the S. vestita is a real curiosity; looking like a large broom, it is in fact an Olearia virgata from the North Island of New Zealand. Cherries are frequent, both for their flower and autumn colour. The Monterrey Cypress, Cupressus macrocarpa, is all over the place as background greenery, while Queen Victoria herself planted the Algerian Oak, Quercus canariensis, near marker post 7.

Sea Buckthorn, Hippophae rhamnoides, is a well known shrub with grey green foliage and orange yellow berries in autumn; by the Burn on the south side of the Hall, below the bottom terrace and upstream from the top damn, you can see a Chinese form called var procera, growing as a tree with a single stem. It's parent in China was a 20m high forest tree and a remarkable sight in full fruit; we wait to see if the offspring will do the same, and also if it is female. North-west of the Croquet Lawn is a nice plant of Cotinus coggygria with particularly good autumn colour, and beyond it, a mature Cucumber Tree, Magnolia acuminata from America.

These are a selection of the trees to be seen, both in the garden and in the new arboretum mainly to the east of it, and very many more are being planted for the future. A separate brochure on the arboretum is availible and all the trees and shrubs in it should be labeled in time – there are over 10,500.