Sunday 23 October 2011

Autumn at Arboretum Wespelaar

Lindera obtusiloba (l), Halesia carolina Monticola Group (r).

View of the pond at Arboretum Wespelaar, a garden planned for autumn colour.
I've spent the weekend at Arboretum Wespelaar, not far from Brussels, where the Maple Society has held its triennial symposium. We had a highly enjoyable programme of talks from an international selection of experts and enthusiasts, plus the usual good conversation and company that one gets at such events, but the real highlight was to walk round the magnificent arboretum on a golden autumn afternoon. Started by Philippe de Spoelberch in the 1980s, when the garden at his home was getting to be overcrowded, it is now one of the most interesting and attractive relatively young arboreta around, thriving under the care of the ever-enthusiastic Koen Camelbeke and his team. A primary interest is the genus Magnolia, but the planting has also been done with an eye to autumn colour, with results that are apparent even in a year like this when autumn colours are poor.

Acer triflorum

Acer palmatum 'Beni Kagami'

Magnolia 'Dude's Brother' - Arboretum Wespelaar has an outstanding collection of magnolias.

'Sorbus' folgneri 'Emiel' - a lovely combination of richly coloured fruit and silver-backed leaves.

A mulch of acorns.


  1. I’m so glad you published this post. Besides being very interesting and including terrific photos, it also reminded me that I’ve been meaning to visit the Los Angeles Arboretum. This may not be quite as wonderful as the one you visited in Belgium but it’s the one which is closest to home.

  2. thanks John for the kind words!
    always welcome

  3. Laurent CHEPPE25 June 2012 at 13:50

    Très joli ! je me prépare une petite visite pour cet automne !! Voici un patrimoine à valoriser !


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