Unusual Evergreen Shrubs at Caerhays
Old Park Wood Walk
If you now wish to go on a really long walk cross from the main drive where you see the sign and the kissing gate right across Lower Hellens Field to Giddle Orchard.
The walk can be started off the Green Route on the main drive between points 108 and 109, and it brings you back onto the Green Route between 97 and 98. If you wish for a more demanding walk you can start between 97/98 and undertake the walk in reverse which will give you much steeper climbs through the woods!
A - To your right you will see the recently restored walls of the old kitchen garden which stopped growing vegetables for the house in the 1950s. Once the last of the conifers are removed the plan is to replant the whole area with a new planting theme and open it up to the public.
B - All the apple trees in Giddle Orchard died of old age many decades ago but there are some fine and very early flowering magnolia seedlings at the top of the bank.
C - The path then turns right along and above the kitchen garden wall until you come out into a clearing above he newly restored former Fourburrow Hunt kennels.
D - You can drop down the path to inspect them or take shelter and view the vast beds of Gunnera manicata from Brazil directly below the kennels.
E - If however you keep along the top path in Old Park you will look down on a huge clearing which is now filled with some 30 new magnolia hybrids. The plan is in time to open up a vista from the main drive so that they can be admired from afar.
F - Next you will look down on a pure white Magnolia campbellii alba set below a plantation of Camellia japonica. These are grown and cut weekly in season for the Covent Garden market.
G - Close by and either side of the path just before another gunnera bed are two outstanding Magnolia ‘Lanarth’ seedlings which are probably worthy of registration and naming. The colours are exceptional.
H - Looking down the slope further along the path you will see a large upright evergreen Trochodendron aralioides. This is a record tree for Cornwall.
J - At the end of the top path you will see a field gate with splendid views over the Luney Valley over the Withy Moor and towards Trevennen Farm. The field is known as The Lawn and you can clearly see here the park pale stonework and wall edging the enclosed deer park that was once Old Park Wood. It is thought that the first Trevanion family house, dating from the 14th century, was located directly above Old Park.
K - Descending down the path you will see another new planting of 30 or so rhododendron species which were planted in 2016. These were grown from wild collected seed from expeditions to China which Caerhays helped sponsor. All are new to the Caerhays collection.
M - You will now turn left onto the track along the bottom of Old Park Wood. This area is known as Beech Walk although the trees which you walk under are quite elderly and a few have fallen or been felled recently.
N - You will then find yourselves at the bottom of the gunnera beds below the kennels. Keep going on the hard track under White Styles Field and you will emerge again onto the main drive just on from the ferneries.
O - You may well wish to approach Old Park from here rather than from further up the drive especially when the garlic and bluebells are at their best in May. However you will find that the paths to the top of the wood are rather steeper going this way