National Trust Cymru reveals some of the best places for spectacular shows of spring flowers this month. May marks the arrival of woodlands carpeted with bluebells and orchards bursting with blossoming fruit trees at the Trust’s gardens and parklands across Wales.
Now is the perfect time to plan a tranquil walk in some of the best spots for bluebells at Bodnant Garden, Chirk Castle, Dinefwr and Penrhyn Castle. See these beautiful springtime visitors in all their glory, before their short-lived season ends later in May. But be careful how you tread as the delicate flowers can take years to recover if stepped on.
Or enjoy the transient beauty of apple, pear and plum blossom as #GwleddYGwanwyn #BlossomWatch celebrations continue at Erddig, Llanerchaeron and Tredegar House. The conservation charity’s campaign encourages people to get outside and experience the simple joy and beauty of blossom.
Towards the end of the month get ready for waterfalls of wisteria at Powis Castle and Garden and Dyffryn Gardens, a seasonal highlight not to be missed.
Bodnant Garden, Conwy
Head into Old Park meadow to wander amongst a sea of blue that stretches out beyond the dappled shade of the woodland glades reaching the riverside gardens of the Dell and Far End. Ornamental and apple trees start to flower and watch and wait for the glorious sight, and scents, of the wisteria on the Terraces.
Chirk Castle, Wrexham
Chirk’s parkland bursts into life in the spring as trees come back into leaf and bluebells brighten up the woodlands. Find a secluded bench amongst the bluebells in the formal gardens, or take a wellie walk from Stable Bank, following the blue waymarked trail across the estate to enjoy the best of Chirk Castle’s bluebell displays.
Follow your nose through Big Wood at Erddig which is blanketed in white-flowering wild garlic in spring. The orange waymarked route is best for admiring this delicate wild-flowering bulb. Meanwhile, over in the walled garden 180 apple trees burst into bloom throughout the garden and espaliered fruit trees, trained to grow across the walls.
Penrhyn Castle and Garden, Bangor
A sea of blue can be seen all around the gardens and woodland surrounding Penryn Castle in May. Follow the path that passes under the hanging boughs of ancient oak trees with spectacular views of Eryri (Snowdonia) and the North Wales coast.
Plas yn Rhiw, Llŷn Peninsula
Each spring bluebells cover the woodland glades in this sheltered garden with spectacular coastal views of Cardigan Bay. In May the orchard will come to life with over 130 trees coming into bloom. Listen out for the cuckoo who has been spotted at Plas yn Rhiw in the past few years.
Walk through the woods alongside the Afon Aeron and take in the emerging bluebells before heading to the Walled Garden to enjoy a beautiful display of fruit blossom. Over sixty varieties of apple tree line the lawns and climbs the walls, each with their own unique shape. Some of the ancient espalier trees are thought to be around 200 years old. Take a moment to watch as bees collect pollen from the newly opened buds.
Powis Castle and Garden, Welshpool
Head to the wood ridge opposite the castle for grand views and a dusting of bluebells amongst the great oaks, rhododendrons and exotic trees. In the Edwardian Formal Garden, apple trees planted hundreds of years ago by the Countess of Powis, Lady Violet, pop with vibrant pink blossom. Later in May stroll along the Aviary and admire the wisteria: one of the garden’s must-see spring sights.
Coed y Bwnydd, Monmouthshire
Dappled shade, birdsong and the heady scent of bluebells means the gently rolling landscape of this Iron Age hill fort continues to be a haven for people and wildlife. Coed-y-Bwnydd means ‘wood of the gentry’ where the annual show of bluebells adds a dazzling splash of colour to an already beautiful, and archaeologically important, site.
Colby Woodland Garden, Pembrokeshire
Colby is colourful all year around but in May it’s the deep violet-blue flowers that dazzle. Wander through West Wood and enjoy the displays in this peaceful secret valley. Visit the the ‘Sky Glade’ at the top of the wood where you can lean on a tree trunk and gaze at the clouds moving across the sky. Towards the end of May see the large star-shaped white blossoms on the medlar tree the Walled Garden.
Each spring, the woodlands across the parkland at Dinefwr are carpeted with thousands of bluebells. Take a stroll through the medieval deer park and spot the bluebells sheltering between the ancient trees and listen out for a variety of wildlife within the ancient parkland, including woodpeckers. A great spot to see bright bluebells is along the Cattle Walk – keep an eye out for the historic herd of White Park Cattle along the way.
Dyffryn Gardens, Cardiff
Spring is still in the air at Dyffryn with pear, apple and apricot blossom will be coating the fruit trees in the Kitchen Gardens. In the newly reopened Pompeiian Garden Wisteria will soon be cascading down the garden’s columns.
The 22-acre Arboretum is dotted with blue and white bluebells sheltering in the speckled shade of our wide collection of exotic and indigenous trees.
Tredegar House, Newport
Find bluebells springing up in the Orchard Garden at Tredegar House.
Cared for in partnership with Growing Space, a registered mental health charity based in Newport, an orchard full of blossoming apple trees and hidden pathways awaits you in the larget of three formal gardens at Tredegar. In the Orangery see varieties of fruit trees known to have been grown during the 18th century flowering beautifully.