Arley Arboretum & Gardens

Today has been mostly gloomy and grey having rained most of the previous night and this morning.  With the need to escape we went for a drive and found solace at Arley Arboretum and Gardens near the Wyre Forest.  

Now I love trees so was looking forward to this.  Heres me hugging an enormous Pine at our destination just to prove how much...

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Having bought our reasonably priced £5 entrance tickets from the onsite restaurant we had a choice of two routes around the garden and tree collection.  We chose the longer Red Walk and set off through a walled garden with large fountain and out to the arboretum.  

Now we aren't tree experts but we do know what we like and we are both drawn to Birch for some reason.  I think it must be that unassuming elegance that they provide and of course the stunning bark on more mature specimens and the delicate leaf canopy glistening up above catching the light in the breeze.  

For me there was a strong scent of pine, probably from the enormous Austrian Pine, that lingered as we made our way through a grassy area.  I found that I was immediately transported to happy memories of Christmas.  

Having researched trees for our own garden in quite some detail it was nice to see a few of those that hadn't quite made it into our own space.  It also confirmed that we had done our homework and made the right decisions because one of the contenders the Fastigiate Purple Beech was absolutely huge so we had a lucky escape there.  

With winter on the way some trees had completely lost all of their leaves and we found that our attention was drawn to smaller details that we may have missed had it been a different season such as the lichen on the bark of the Tibetan Cherry (centre) and the gorgeous yellow growth on the unknown tree (right).

This is a nice day out if you also love trees and fun for children is provided in the form of a maze, a sensory garden (which probably looks better in the summer) and the obligatory play area.  The views out towards the Wyre Forest in the distance and the Severn Valley Railway Steam Engine in the foreground hurtling towards Brignorth, provide a lovely backdrop making this a special place to visit.

As it began to cloud over again and rain we made our way back via the plant sales to the cafe for a hot beverage where we were surprised to see a group of Peacocks in a greenhouse.  They definitely had the right idea about staying indoors out of the dreadful weather. 


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