The conservation charity piloted #BlossomWatch last year when the country had just entered lockdown. And, with thousands capturing and sharing images of trees in bloom across social media platforms, and four million views in the first two weeks, the Trust is now making it an annual tradition, asking people to share the joy and hope that the sight of blush-tinted blooms will help to lift spirits and enable everyone to celebrate nature together.
In Lincolnshire, the gardens at Belton House, between Sleaford and Grantham and Gunby Hall, near Skegness, are already coming alive with new spring blooms.
Ellie Marrian, gardener at Belton House, said: “Chaenomeles kick off Belton’s blossom season with bright, colourful flowers crisscrossing up the walls around the estate, before tree blossom like Prunus ‘Tai-haku’ start to unfurl. The Japanese Cherry lines the path from the sundial to the house, a sight not to be missed – before the finale of the white hawthorn coming into flower in Belton’s Italian garden, in May.”
Clive Ironmonger, gardener at Gunby Estate, Hall and Gardens, said: “Stepping down the ‘Cherry Walk’ in Gunby’s gardens is like travelling through time. Originally planted in the 1930s, the trees bloom gradually in sequence all along the walk.
“The Prunus ‘Tai-haku’ is already in full bloom, with the white-blushed pink Prunus ‘Serrulata’ just opening. Soon it will be the turn of the creamy-white Prunus ‘Ukon’, followed by the light pink Prunus ‘Fugenzo’ to complete this display.
“In the kitchen garden the pears are in full flower now, whilst we eagerly await the apple blossom of the Pergola Walk and orchard, a lovely sight and setting the scene for the fruits of autumn to follow.”
The Trust says a growing body of evidence suggests that moments of noticing nature each day are vital for wellbeing and building a closer connection with nature, and further evidence also suggests that people derive many of the benefits from online engagement. Therefore, the Trust is asking people to celebrate blossom, to ‘turn social media pink, white and green’ over the coming weeks, to mark one of ‘nature’s greatest spectacles’.
To get involved simply take and share imagery using #BlossomWatch on social media.
The Trust is also launching a blossom map this year to record blossom sightings across the country. For further information, to donate towards the Trust’s tree planting ambitions, and inspiration, visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/blossom-watch
Visitors hoping to see the beautiful blossom displays at Belton House or Gunby are advised to pre-book their tickets, to guarantee entry, via these webpages: