National Trust Calke Abbey

Discover something special at Calke Abbey, the country house in decline. Share your stories and photos with us at #YourCalke .

The sweet pea tunnel is coming along nicely this summer 😍 Not only does it look gorgeous, but it smells great too 🌸 Being out in the garden and among nature is the perfect way to wind down at the end of the week (especially when it looks this good!) Will you be spending any time relaxing in your garden this weekend? #calkeabbey #nationaltrust #nationaltrustgardens #calke #YourCalke #sweetpeas #flowers #workinggarden #outdoors #weekend #fridayfeeling
It's hay making season for the Rangers, who were lucky to spot the hay flying on thermal pockets of air this week! Swipe right to see the hay in action ➡️➡️ . . . #rangersatwork #yourcalke #haymaking #makehaywhilstthesunshines
Spotted on the estate this month are the Silver-washed fritillary butterflies. Here we have a male (orange), and the rare valezina form of the female. These beauties should be flying for the next month, along with many other butterflies. Have you spotted any whilst enjoying the estate? . . . #ukbutterflies #yourcalke
In July 1882 a journalist for the Derby Mercury paid a visit to the Calke estate and concluded "Many of the old oaks are exhibiting signs of decay; still, most of them are likely to remain as moments of the past for many ages to come". The practice of allowing trees to decay naturally, and of leaving deadwood where it falls, continues to this day. This has created a rich and complex habitat which in turn has earned Calke the status of SSSI (site of specific scientific interest) and NNR (national nature reserve) for deadwood invertebrates and ecology. As our TOTY ages and begins to decay further; shedding limbs, it too will contribute to this valuable habitat, whilst hopefully remaining for "many ages to come" . . . #calketoty #yourcalke
Every day is bring your dog to work day for our ranger dog Hayley! Here she is ID'ing a golden bloomed longhorn beetle in the meadow. . . . #bringyourdogtoworkday #workingdog #yourcalke
For those of you who wonder why some of the trees in the park have chestnut fencing around them, wonder no more. The fences have been put in place to protect the veteran trees, like our tree of the year, from livestock in the park. Both the sheep and cows like to sit up under trees like TOTY, either for shade when the sun is out, or to shelter from the rain. Unfortunately this can cause the ground surrounding the trees to become compacted, damaging the roots and shortening the trees lifespans, which we obviously don't want. . . . #yourcalke #calketoty
The conservation team are getting up close and personal with the natural history collection 🦋 . . Here we have a case of pinned insects, including Argent and Sable moths. In the last photos, you’ll see the Deaths-head Hawkmoth - that’s the massive one! 😱 . . Some of the insect cases are labelled ‘VHC’ so we can assume these were collected by Sir Vauncey Harpur Crewe, and date back to 1904. It’s important to keep an eye on these cases because if they become damp and damaged, pests can get in and eat the collection 🤭 . . #nationaltrust #naturalhistory #moths #insects #history #collection #calkeabbey #YourCalke #HiddenCalke
Mowing the rides in Casey's Plantation with Hayley the ranger dog for company. Swipe to see if you can spot her! 🐾🐾 . . . #rangersatwork #yourcalke #woodlandmanagement #working dog
Wonderful wisteria looking lush in Central Yard 🌸🌱 . . Have you seen any gorgeous wisteria this spring? . . #YourCalke #calkeabbey #nationaltrust #nationaltrustgardens #garden #wisteria #flowers #walledgarden #outdoors #spring #dayout #colour #wildlifewednesday
You may have heard us mention our veteran trees here at Calke, of which there are over 100, but what is a veteran tree exactly? A veteran tree is a tree that is significantly important to wildlife, our cultural history or the landscape. In oaks, trees with a girth of over 4.7m, like our TOTY, have significant importance in terms of wildlife. TOTY also predates the remodelling of the parkland by Sir Henry Crewe in the late 1700s, and is now quite a feature in the landscape. This means our TOTY hits all 3 of the criteria for us to class it as a veteran! What other trees in the park do you think are veterans? #calketoty #yourcalke
When the light is perfect for capturing Calke in all its beauty 😍 . . This weekend, we’ll be up with the lark to see the sunrise over the estate. Come along and see Calke in a whole new light, listen out for spring sounds of the Dawn Chorus and enjoy a peaceful walk in the stunning parkland. It’s an early start, but it’s worth it! Especially for the full English brekkie at the end 😉 Check the What’s On page on the website for more info ☀️ . . #dawnchorus #nationaltrust #calkeabbey #yourcalke #outdoors #walking #bluebells #birdwatching #birdsong #birds #countryside #trees
We think spring looks pretty good at Calke 😉 the auriculas are on display, the tulips look stunning in Central Yard and our Plant of the Week is a delightful anemone in the Physic Garden 🌸🌻🌺 have you spotted any bursts of colour recently? . . #YourCalke #spring #nationaltrust #nationaltrustgardens #outdoors #gardening #garden #gardendesign #flowers #auricula #calkeabbey
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