Melbourne Hall -news and photos from the gardens- and two free tickets to give away.

Photos kindly provided by award-winning photographer Andrea Jones.

Fritillaria meleagris or snake’s head fritillary. Naturalises in grass; grows well in fertile, humus-rich soil and will seed around in time.

Melbourne Hall’s newsletter pops into my inbox on a regular basis and makes me want to jump in the car and drive straight over. The spring display is truly magical as ancient trees bust into leaf and there’s colour everywhere with beautiful bulbs and blossom.

Magnolia Caerhays Belle

The gardens were laid out in the formal French style by landscape designers George Loudon and Henry Wise in the early 18th century. There’s a beautiful pool, known as The Great Basin, at the heart of the garden, and paths lead off to less formal areas; the dell, arboretum, mill stream borders, and kitchen garden.

There’s a picture-postcard view from the Bird Cage across the pool towards Melbourne Hall. I particularly love the reflection of the trees in the water. To the left of the hall there’s a magnificent Atlas Cedar, Cedrus atlantica, native to the Atlas Mountains in Morocco, just as happy on the terrace at Melbourne.

Here’s a closer view of the house with Melbourne Church in the backdrop. To the far left of the gardens, there’s a 20 acre lake and picturesque mill house and weir. You can walk along one side of the lake and look back towards the church and hall for another stunning view.

I always marvel at the beauty of the cloud-pruned hedges surrounding the pool. There’s quite a skill in maintaining such a feature. The Bird Cage provides a striking focal point across the pool, looking out from the house opposite.

Following the paths radiating from the main garden, there’s a series of mill stream borders planted with moisture-loving plants. The pale pink flowers are Persicaria bistorta, a rhizomatous perennial which thrives in damp conditions and flowers for a long period. Its common name is Easter giant. There’s also a bank of hostas, candelabra primulas and ground cover geraniums with Purple Dream tulips adding to the pink and magenta theme.

Looking across from the other side of the bridge, there’s a mature yellow tree peony and a bank of pale blue camassia and blue iris.

Further along the stream, there’s scented azalea luteum and a purple acer, underplanted with hostas and camassia.

Corydalis solida, known as fumewort, a low-growing tuberous perennial which can cope with some shade and is good for underplanting of spring trees and shrubs.

Following the path round, you come to the Kitchen Garden. This pretty peach ‘Peregrine’ is beautifully trained along the walls, getting some protection from the weather. It produces tasty, white-fleshed fruit in August and September. In the Melbourne Hall newsletter there’s a recipe for ‘baked toffee peaches’ with amaretti biscuits, muscovado sugar and butter by Jane Lovett.

Reflections in the water are mesmerising. Melbourne Hall is an RHS Partner garden and is taking part in The Garden of the Year competition. The theme of this year’s competition is ‘Feel Good’ reflecting on how beneficial it is to have a connection with nature and exercise in beautiful gardens and outdoor spaces. You can vote for Melbourne and find out more here:

Here’s the website link giving all the details of opening times and events at Melbourne Hall. Look out for special food events in the Courtyard, and celebrity appearances and live music in the Walled Rose Garden.

Church Square, Melbourne, Derbyshire, DE73 8EN

With grateful thanks to Andrea Jones for allowing the use of her photos for the blog. Copyright

Please leave a comment, and names will be put into a computer generated draw to randomly select one winner for two free tickets for entry to the garden. Sorry, this doesn’t include travel costs. The draw will be made at 6pm on Monday 18th April. P

Please feel free to comment even if you don’t wish to be entered in the draw, and let me know what you think of the gardens. Thank you for reading the blog and for getting in touch.

A previous post on the hall:

18 thoughts on “Melbourne Hall -news and photos from the gardens- and two free tickets to give away.

    • I hope you can visit one day. I would love to show you around local attractions. There’s also Calke Abbey and the new National Trust property Stoneywell Cottage nearby. Let me know if you ever fancy a road trip. Karen


  1. Such a beautiful post! I do miss visiting the British gardens as I find them so inspiring. I’m afraid I cannot enter the draw at this moment although I would love to visit the garden sometime. The flower photographs were inspiring too! Amelia

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Amelia. I just had to highlight those photos as something beautiful and positive to share with everyone. I hope one day you’ll get the chance to visit. East Midlands airport is nearby. Lots of gardens in this area. Maybe it will happen. I do hope so. Happy Easter too. Karen xx


  2. I have been to Melbourne Hall a number if times although never, I don’t think, in spring, so it was lovely to see these photos – thanks for sharing both them and your visit. Hope you are managing to hold everything together after your recent family sadnesses x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Cathy. The spring garden at Melbourne is an absolute joy. Many happy memories of visiting with the family. Yes thank you Cathy. Sadness will ease in time. Everyone seems to have had a difficult few years, so we are no different from anyone else. I’m starting to feel a bit better now. Thanks for reading and for your kind comments. Enjoy the Easter holidays! Karen xx


    • Thank you Suella. It’s one of my favourites. Mum and I have been many times and also have wonderful happy memories. Thanks for reading the blog and for your kind comments. Happy Easter too! Xx


    • Thank you Eliza. At least we can all share them through blogging. I often ‘visit’ gardens vicariously through the photos. Thank you for reading and for your kind comments. I hope you are enjoying the Easter holidays over there. Karen xx

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Cathy. I’ve got the pink one in my woodland border. It’s such a pretty plant. Seems to arrive suddenly, and then disappears for the summer. Happy Easter, and thanks for your kind comments.


    • Thank you Anne. Thanks for your kind comments. I do wish you could fly over. So many gorgeous gardens to show you around here. We will just have to rely on photos for now. Enjoy the weekend. Karen x

      Liked by 1 person

Please leave a comment and let me know what you think. It's nice to know I'm not talking to myself on here.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s