Enjoy spring blossom in the Garden of England
In Japan ‘Hanami’, or ‘flower viewing’, is all about enjoying the fleeting beauty of blossom trees as they come into bloom. There’s no better bringer of gratitude for the arrival of spring than the gentle flutter of falling petals surrounding you as you stroll through a garden or orchard. The Japanese even have a name for that, ‘Hana no ame’ or ‘flower rain’, which is when blossom sprinkles down from trees.
Go on your own flower-viewing adventure as you take a stroll through National Trust gardens in Kent, and under the arbours of blossoming fruit trees...
Sissinghurst Castle Garden
You’ll be spoilt for choice at Sissinghurst. There are over 1,100 fruit trees alone in the main orchard, including rows of apple, pear, cherry, all of which burst into masses of blossom from the end of April onwards. The orchard in the garden is more informal. Most blossom here will be out from the end of April and throughout May, but the cherry trees in the Rose Garden continue to flower intermittently even during the winter.
The young cherry trees at Emmetts Garden come into flower in the first or second week of May. Their beautiful pink blossoms are underplanted with a carpet of pink, red, white and black tulips, that are planted to flower along with the cherry trees, for a truly arresting sight. The avenue of cherry trees and tulips takes your eye through and across far-reaching views of the Kentish Weald beyond.
The blossom at Scotney Castle greets you as you walk through the tunnel of its dappled shade into the garden towards the Old Castle. These early flowering cherries frame the views down to the castle ruins. Looking back up at the Mansion it appears to be floating on a cloud of pink blossom.
Blossom can be found on the native varieties of pear, apple and crab apple trees at Bateman’s from mid-April to mid-May. Don’t forget to look out for blossom out on the estate with blackthorn, hawthorn and spindle trees flowering from early March to mid-April.
Look out for the pink-tinged cherry blossom on the eastern bank in the garden. In the north pleasure garden, the crab apple blossom is mirrored in the lake. All across the estate blossom bursts to life in the hedgerows.
Where to stay: Tanner Farm Park - a family friendly five-star site surrounded by glorious Kentish countryside and picturesque villages, with plenty of activities and places of interest nearby.