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Rare Wild Tulips in flower at Holme Pierrepont Hall

The Grade II listed gardens and grounds are open to the public daily (except Saturdays) in April and on Wednesdays only until October.

A rare, wild flower believed to be the only garden tulip which grows naturally in the wild has burst into flower in the grounds of Holme Pierrepont Hall this week.

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‘Tulipa sylvestris’ is a cheerful, yellow tulip which is rarely seen growing in the wild as each bulb typically only flowers once in every 5 or 10 years.

The flowers on the Holme Pierrepont Hall estate are believed to be from original Tudor bulbs and the story of how these exquisite flowers came to be in the parkland has its roots in early 17th century Tudor history.

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Whilst the flower was originally introduced into England in Roman times from the Southern Mediterranean, Tulips became extremely fashionable in the 1630s and their popularity and scarcity generated one of the first recorded speculative bubbles in commercial history.

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This period in time saw the price of tulips rise astronomically across Europe from Holland, with many bulbs costing as much as the price of a house to purchase.

The explosion in tulip prices, commonly known as ‘Tulip Mania’ proved to be short-lived.

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When the demand and market for tulips collapsed in February 1637, many livelihoods and homes were lost for people connected with the industry.

It was the collapse of ‘Tulip Mania’ which ultimately saw the bulbs at Holme Pierrepont Hall being discarded over the garden wall – where they remain today.

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Back in the 17th Century, the East Garden at Holme Pierrepont Hall was traditionally walled and this is where the bulbs were originally planted.

When the East garden was dismantled back in the 1800s and the tulips had grown out of fashion, the estate gardeners simply threw the tulip bulbs over the garden wall and into the back field.

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Robert and Charlotte Brackenbury are the 19th generation owners of this Tudor manor house, the oldest brick building in Nottinghamshire, just a few minutes’ drive from West Bridgford.

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Charlotte Brackenbury is delighted to see the tulips bursting into flower, albeit somewhat earlier than usual. She says, “The timing of Tulipa Sylvestris flowering is perfect this year. Anyone planning to visit either the gardens or our Specialist Plant Fair on Sunday 18th April should enjoy seeking out these delightful rare flowers on the estate.”


She goes on to say, “The Specialist Plant Fair run by Flower Power Fairs, features a number of local nursery stallholders offering unusual plants and cuttings for sale at reasonable prices. Entrance to the Plant Fair is included in the Garden ticket price.”


Many other plants have been naturalized in the grounds for hundreds of years although others have been cultivated by the team of gardeners and volunteers who work at the Hall. The Grade II listed Courtyard and East garden look glorious throughout the spring and summer months with their displays of herbaceous plants.


Visitors must pre-purchase tickets to visit the gardens and plant fair. Takeaway refreshments are available on Sundays.  Well behaved dogs on leads are welcome.


Tickets are available to purchase in advance from

Tickets: £5.00 for Adults, Children FREE except on Plant Fair day when only under 12’s are FREE.   Historic House members enter FREE (except on Plant Fair day) but still need to book a ticket online .

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