Arriving at Batsford Arboretum in Gloucestershire, surely the promised flowers would capture the imagination and interest more than the trees.
Perhaps it’s no coincidence that opening the way along the designated footpath was a small array of ‘Bleeding Hearts’ – the delicately petite heart-shaped blooms, just to suggest how striking any forthcoming floral displays might be.
Set on been charmed by the subtle pink blossom of the Cherry trees, the vibrant yellow Daffodils and purest white Snowdrops, started a meandering spring walk around the 56 acres. The morning sun glinted through the leafy branches of the various silvicultural specimens, from Japan, the USA, Chile and elsewhere.
That was it. It’s an Arboretum after all. Just a few minutes in, the trees took majestic command. To make the trip truly worthwhile the visitor just has to start looking up and begin to see the trees from the wood.
The juxtaposition of the small gently swaying Latinate name labels hanging from the branches and the broad textured tree trunk of the Californian Redwoods sums the place up – deftly dramatic.
The landscape rises and falls reasonably gently, with plenty of neatly carved benches along the way to reflect or rest. The occasional waterfall, rock pool and stream contribute a tranquil watery relief amongst the greenery.
Favourite amongst it all was the varied examples of bamboo – neat and defined, sturdy and determined.
The £7 ticket allows visitors to go in and out on the day – or round and around, if on getting to the end realise just not looked up enough.
See: Batsford Arboretum
© Laura Claire H 2014