At the northern end of Wakehurst is a designated nature reserve which encompasses part of the Loder Valley. A single observation hide overlooks a wooded lake, a sizeable area of reed and bulrush has a raised walkway through its middle and the waterside vegetation is truly wild. An antidote to the manicured and alien world to the south... although, the gardens themselves have plenty of wild areas left, be they un-mown banks full of wild flowers or large open meadows, as can be seen from the images below.
|Red Campion, Corn Chamomile and Tufted Vetch abounds!|
|A wilder bank, full of Bird's-foot Trefoil, Tufted Vetch and Common Knapweed|
|Rides like this were full of invertebrates!|
The Seed Bank building is worth a visit. Apart from the obligatory interpretation boards, large glass panels allow you to look in on the scientists and botanists at work, unpacking, drying and storing the seeds, vital in maintaining the long-term safety of vulnerable species.
|You can watch the staff saving species from extinction...|
|...while outside the raised habitat beds have encouraged some rarities to escape!|