Spring at Cholmondeley Castle Gardens

First published on my previous blog – May 2013

It might be running a few weeks late, but spring has finally arrived in this corner of the UK. My challenge in late April and early May has been to capture the blossom, the daffodils, tulips and other spring flowers in all their freshness, before early summer takes over with its lushness and greenery.

Cholmondeley Castle Gardens - April Sunshine in Temple Garden

Spring colour in the Temple Garden at Cholmondeley Castle, Cheshire

One obvious destination was Cholmondeley Castle Gardens in Cheshire. The Temple Garden there is beautiful at any time of year, but in spring it is particularly picturesque. Visitors can enjoy swathes of daffodils beside the lake and cherries, with blossom of the faintest pink, reflected in the still water.

This part of the gardens at Cholmondeley Castle, was neglected during the Second World War, when the castle was used as a hospital. It was the 6th Marquess and his wife, the current Dowager Marchioness of Cholmondeley, who transformed the Temple Garden into what we see today, by clearing the lake, removing vegetation and carefully replanting.

Cholmondeley Castle - Temple Garden in May

Photographed in early May, the Temple Garden at Cholmondeley Castle, Cheshire, is bathed in spring sunshine.

There are two temples, one with an ironwork dome dates from Victorian times, while the structure on a small island in the lake was built by the 1st Marquess, using stone columns salvaged from the old hall that stood nearby.

Ornamental cherry in bloom

Cherry blossom on a bright April afternoon.

I visited the gardens twice over a period of two weeks, the second time with fellow garden photographer Julia Stanley. I enjoyed introducing Cholmondeley to her and we both took our time capturing the details of the garden, including the blossom of the flowering cherry, Prunus yedoensis, with its arching branches reflected in the lake – and individual blooms set against the blue spring sky.

You can see more photos taken throughout the year in the Cholmondeley Castle Gardens gallery on my main website.

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