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bluebell woods and a bit of bad timing …

We made our annual pilgrimage to see the bluebell wood at Coton Manor – the website said the bluebells were now flowering.  I can remember the first time I went to see them – what a sight – the sun was streaming through the trees – the bluebells were flowering their socks off – and that particular bluebell fragrance when they are en masse is intoxicating.  It really did make my heart miss a beat and put a big grin on my face .( see here for last summers' visit)

Alas, this time, the day was a little dull and a lot of the bluebells were still in bud – next week would have been better to get the full effect.  It was still glorious though and the Coton Manor gardens are a delight.  It is quite a steep garden with streams running through it.  They have been busy getting the borders weeded and ready for the coming season everything was in spit-spot order.

A fine and subtle spirit dwells
In every little flower,
Each one its own sweet feeling breathes
With more or less of power.
There is a silent eloquence
In every wild bluebell
That fills my softened heart with bliss
That words could never tell.

Here are some pictures for you to enjoy.















People come from miles around to visit this garden the car park was jammed full but somehow everyone seems to disperse and it doesn’t seem crowded – and at the end of the visit we all gravitate towards the tea rooms where pots of tea and freshly made cakes and scones are devoured.

All in all -  an afternoon of delights.

“Over every inch of wood, as far as and even beyond its boundaries, the bluebells are also thickening for flower, a million spikes with dark hearts of bud and here and there a breaking out of petals.  They cover the rich soggy wood-soil like shining green reeds, everywhere.  Among them and perhaps because of them there are a few primroses, fewer anemones.  The bluebells crowd out everything, drown the whole wood-floor with great pools of flower until the trees, in May, seem to be standing in deep lakes of liquid mauve.”

Extract from ‘Through the Woods’ by H.E. Bates


  1. Hello Elaine:

    It is many years now since we were at Coton Manor and, until this post, we had no idea that they had such extensive bluebell woods. It must have been high summer when we visited.

    Judging from your photographs the gardens do indeed look ready for the coming season - so full of promise. In many respects we rather like the anticipation more than the actuality.

  2. Oh those bluebells are something to see.

  3. Oh the bluebells are magical Elaine. It sounds as if you enjoyed a special afternoon.

  4. Beautiful garden - I love the scent in a bluebell wood.

  5. Those Bluebells are STUNNING.

  6. Beautiful photos of the bluebells. They are stunning here at the moment. I love the wisteria, too.

  7. Coton Manor Gardens, beautiful, I put it on my list. We visit England every year in May and we are always very impressed by the bluebell woods, a wonderful sight. Of course our main attraction is visiting gardens and last but not least having tea with scones or cakes. We also do a lot of walking along the public footpaths. Yes, these are the things for which I love going to your country.

  8. Those bluebells look pretty good to me.

  9. Beautiful images of a lovely garden. Bluebell woods are just amazing in every sense of the word.

    We have bluebell woods about a mile from our home and our daughter has one at the bottom of her garden. It is a delight.

  10. Oh my gosh these are absolutely breathtaking!!

  11. What garden beauty. Here in the US, Texas is known for their a Texas bluebells. I should like to linger at Coton Manor.

  12. What gorgeous bluebells. We've been biding our time and waiting for the explosion of blue in our local woods. A week ago there was nothing but I can feel another trip coming along very soon. Would hate to miss them. Coton Manor looks a lovely place to visit.
    Patricia x

  13. That sounds, and looks, like a most enjoyable day out. Flighty xx

  14. We visited our local bluebell woods late last week but they were still in bud - there is nothing better than that intense glow of blue under the trees and the intoxicating scent in the air. Coton Manor looks wonderful, I must add it to my list of places to visit:)

  15. Oh wow! Those first two pics are utterly stunning! The contrast of the bluebells with the fresh tender green leaves is gorgeous. You just can't beat a bluebell's one of my favourite sights. I did enjoy

  16. I'm still to visit a bluebell wood this year and I hope to see one soon and not miss it like last year. Amazing pictures and a fantastic Manor! Take care xx

  17. Those bluebells still look wonderful to me! I never get to see anything like that around here so I marvel at little clumps of bluebells growing along the railway lines!! Nothing as grand as your view! Love that photo of the pale cream and green tulips growing in that big old tub, gorgeous shot!

  18. Your bluebell pictures are stunning. I never seem to be able to capture the blueness of them. The gardens look delightful and so empty compared with the car park! Sarah x

  19. Lovely to see...and cakes and scones afterwards??? Yes. Enjoyed the poem as well. What a wonderful place to visit, and it's so try that timing is everything.

  20. What an absolute dream!!!!!!!!! Oh my goodness...... I am speechless at the moment! That garden has so many amazing elements.... A place I would love to see! Thank you so much for sharing this one! I hope you have a lovely weekend! Nicole xo

  21. What a beautiful garden, and thank you for the bluebells, I miss the spectacular bluebell woods near where we used to live.

  22. Fantastic. The bluebells are just stunning.

  23. What an absolutely beautiful and charming place! I looked at your post from last summer too and the herbaceous border looked glorious.

  24. How amazing to have this as your own garden. Stunning.

  25. Aren't they just the most wonderful flowers. Loved this post, and the H.E. Bates extract :)

  26. Such pretty bluebells. There are banks of them towering above the path as I walk down into our village which always make me smile, mixed with celandines and the wild garlic that's just coming into flower. I always intend to seek out an old bluebell wood one day though...

  27. Oh Elaine!! Thank you so much---so much beauty all around! It made my day! I love bluebells! Also, thank you for your support on my blog. It helps knowing someone else is reading it!:)

  28. I dream of visiting English gardens like this one day! The bluebells are incredible!


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