We’re very lucky with the location of the Swettenham Arms – in the summer, our own gardens and lavender meadow surround us with flowers, and in spring we have the wild flowers (daffodils, snowdrops and crocuses) in the Quinta Lovell Arboretum behind us.
Now, in autumn, the Arboretum’s really coming into its own with the leaves starting to turn. There’s a variety of UK woodland trees there, including oak, ash, rowan, sycamore and birch as well as evergreens like holly and conifers.
Ever wondered why and how the trees put on this stunning display for us? All summer, leaves manufacture food for the tree using chlorophyll, which gives the leaf its green colour. Chlorophyll absorbs energy from sunlight, and uses it to transform carbon dioxide and water to carbohydrates, such as sugars and starch. When the days get shorter and colder, the leaves stop processing energy and the chlorophyll breaks down, leaving existing yellow and orange colours visible on the leave. Other chemical processes cause different colour changes, such as the spectacular reds of acer and maple trees. The variation of each individual type of tree is due to the varying amounts of chlorophyll residue.
In addition, the tree manufactures a layer of cells at the stem of the leave and gradually severs it, so that when the leave falls the point is already healed.
The Arboretum is just on the point of looking spectacular, and soon there’ll be a thick carpet of dead leaves to scuff in as well. We’re easily accessible by bike and on foot as well as by car, so come and enjoy an autumnal walk in the Arboretum and visit us for lunch or morning coffee. We welcome walking boots and dogs in our stone flagged bar area, and we’re a family-friendly pub too. Take a look at our current menu over on our Food page.