Welcome to this ‘April’ article, the fourth in a series of posts which aim to review, through photographs, twelve months of activity in and around the diverse landscape of Compton Verney. It’s a historic landscape that has seen much change, from the shaping of the areas as new plants establish to the visual delight gained from one of a number of artistic interactions.
There are huge changes in the atmosphere from the busiest of open days to quiet days when just bird song can be heard. Either way, visually the landscape changes minute by minute and it’s wonderful to be there to experience it – and on occasion capture an image or two!
Links to other months will be added at the bottom of the page, but for now, I hope you enjoy ‘April – The landscape at Compton Verney’ :
Tulipa sylvestris, or the woodland tulip, has become naturalised at Compton Verney, giving delight each spring when they reappear below the West Lawn lime trees and through the coppice. A perennial tulip, now there’s a thing! © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Ornithogalum nutans, or star-of-Bethlehem (very appropriate for the time of year!) is to be found amongst the Lime trees and seeing is believing – they are really special. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Growing in numbers now we’ve adjusted the grass management, primroses add a splash of colour in the grass beneath the Cedar trees. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Linking up with Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, in April we embarked on a short term survey to track small mammals. We hope over time to learn a great deal more about the wildlife that visits or lives at Compton Verney, and although on this occasion results were unclear, we did have positive results for other species. Using a borrowed night vision camera, we were able to catch some good images of badgers on-site, which is leading to vaccinations in the new year. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Lesser celandine (Ranunculus ficaria) is spread throughout the grassy lakeside areas, flowering from March onwards. Celandine sits quietly between grassy blades, preferring damp ground and has been immortalised by the pen of some very well known people – D. H. Lawrence, J. R. R. Tolkien and William Wordsworth to name three. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
One of the Big Tree Climbing Company climbing sessions which were very well received at Compton Verney. More sessions planned for 2015 so do watch this space! © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Wild daffodil, or Lent lily is one of a number of bulbous plants that have become naturalised at Compton Verney, here with a very old Mahonia flowering at the base of this majestic London Plane. We’re adding to their numbers each year to boost the offering of flowers beside each path. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Graylag geese visit the middle pool at Compton Verney regularly, which is a lovely sight. They do have a tendency to wander the lawns each evening however, leaving calling cards all over the grass which isn’t so welcome!
Winter windflower (Anemone blanda) is to be found in various locations at Compton Verney. They were almost certainly planted by gardeners of old either at their whim or that of the Lord or Lady of the Manor at one time or another. Whoever was the genius we know not, but their inspiration lives on in these beautiful blue drifts. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
Recently planted Kniphofia blooms for the first time on the chapel bank, where a little long overdue colour was very well received by visitors to the chapel. © Compton Verney / Gary Webb 2014
April 2014 gave the long awaited colour injection that we all needed, and set us up for an amazing season with mild temperatures and frequent (enough) rainfall to keep everything green and pleasant – a great year for gardening. With my favourite month of May just around the corner, all was looking grand!
Regards, Gary Webb, Head of Landscape & Garden at Compton Verney.
January – The Landscape at Compton Verney
February – The Landscape at Compton Verney
March – The Landscape at Compton Verney