THE delightful gardens at the 10-acre Shobrooke Park opened to the public on a number of dates in April and the March dates were booked quickly.

The gardens will be open for two final openings this year on Friday and Saturday, May 21 and 22.

Shobrooke Park Garden was laid out in the 1850s for the mansion built to look out over Shobrooke Park.

The house was lost in a fire in 1946.

However, the grand garden remains, with its Portland stone terracing and flowering shrubs under ancient oaks. All magnificent in the Spring.

Visitors will see camellias, magnolias and rhododendrons amongst carpets of daffodils.

There is an opportunity to wander through the oak woodland and on to the formal terracing. See the way that clipped yew and laurel compliment the stonework. Enjoy the views out over Shobrooke Park with its cascade of ponds.

Covid restrictions mean booking is essential and social distancing must be observed.

Masks are not mandatory; but will be needed if you use the toilet.

Some of the paths are narrow and to walk them you must wear a mask as a one-way system will not be practical.

This gem of a garden is springing into life, with new greenery everywhere.

The oaks are starting to leaf allowing light to shine on the last of the daffodils and primroses being replaced by bluebells.

The magnolias are at their best and the early rhododendrons give splashes of colour.

The camellias, covered in blooms, sit in a pool of their spent flowers. This riot of colours contrasts with the distant views of Shobrooke Park, with its green fields and majestic trees.

The garden is rough and steep in places so unfortunately not suitable for people with mobility problems or wheelchairs.

Stout boots and walking sticks are sensible for your visit. Children must be closely supervised, at all times, as the Portland Stone walls make dangerous climbing frames. Unfortunately, no dogs are permitted.

Owners Clare and Jack Shelley look forward to welcoming visitors as long as they buy a ticket in advance.

They explained: “The garden is not beautifully manicured. It used to be maintained by a team of six men, and a boy with a pony.

“Now it is cared for by two folk in their late 70s, with one or two days a week of gardening help. But we love our garden, and we have the advantage of modern garden machinery! We hope you will enjoy sharing it with us.”