Ness Botanic Gardens was born of one man’s passionate interest in plants and his desire to share that interest with others
When the Liverpool cotton merchant Arthur Kilpin Bulley began to create a garden in 1898, part of which he opened to local residents, he laid the foundations of one of the major botanic gardens in the United Kingdom.
Bulley died in 1942, and in 1948 his daughter Lois presented the Gardens to the University of Liverpool with an endowment of £75,000.
The only stipulation was that they be kept as a botanic gardens as a practical and fitting tribute to the memory of her father and they have remained so ever since.
When Ken Hulme was appointed Director in 1957 he spent three decades achieving a more natural setting for the plants. The ornamental gardens increased from 2.4 to 18.4 hectares and superb collections of Rhododendrons, Azaleas, Camellias, Cherries and Heathers were established.
Set on the banks of the River Dee with breathtaking views across to North Wales, Ness Botanic Gardens boasts international repute with the national collection of Mountain Ash (Sorbus) trees.
The gardens are open 10 – 5 Wednesday – Monday 1 March – 31 October (10 – 4.30 in winter). The shop is open every day at the same times.
The Garden Kitchen (0151 353 1573) is open 9.30 – 5 every day from 1 March – 31 October (9.30 – 4.30 in winter).
Catering and guided tours can be pre-booked.