On Wednesday 16th July, a group of 19 members and guests of the Burton and Rossett Horticultural Society went by car for a private evening visit to The Dorothy Clive Garden at Willoughbridge, Market Drayton.
We were met by our excellent guide, Zdenek, an enthusiastic and very knowledgeable young man -- one of the few staff employed there -- who showed us around the garden and answered questions. After a cup of tea and some delicious lemon and lavender shortbread, we had the garden to ourselves to wander about.
The garden is in two parts:
The older part is in a disused quarry with a network of paths through rhododendron filled woodland leading to a waterfall. Even in July there was one rhododendron in flower but we were told the best time to see the rhodies in full bloom is at the end of May.
The tearoom overlooks the other half of the garden with its splendid views over the Shropshire countryside. Some of the paths in this part of the garden were quite steep and the many borders were planted with tender plants and annuals for Summer. In Spring they are full of bulbs which give a wonderful display.
The whole garden is a very tranquil place to visit at any time of the year and our time there was enjoyed by all.