Tag Archives: walled garden

Drumelzier Old Manse – Open Day

On Sunday afternoon I was helping out at the Scotland’s Garden Scheme open day at Drumelzier Old Manse – I’d been excited about this one for quite a while as I’d seen photographs and knew it promised to be quite special.

Drumelzier Old Manse

It’s a traditional Manse garden in the Upper Tweed Valley (just along the road from the Botanical Gardens at Dawyk). They have the most gorgeous herbaceous border I think I’ve ever seen, bursting with colour. they even have their own Meconopsis ‘Hensol Violet’.

Drumelzier Old Manse

There’s a fantastic kitchen garden and in the lower garden they have a wonderful shade garden with a path along the burn. All of this within the most beautiful countryside, it really was quite idyllic.

Drumelzier Old Manse

I was on gate duty and we had over 200 people through within the first hour or so – clearly the sunshine, not to mention a couple of nice pieces of PR, had drawn people in from all over.

Drumelzier Old Manse

It was an absolutely super day, there was an organist playing and singing in the church next door, an excellent plant sale organised by Jane and Graham from The Potting Shed (another fantastic garden in the area that’s well worth a visit) and teas and cakes aplenty were served by an army of volunteers in the village hall.

Drumelzier Old Manse

Yes, I did buy more plants, although there wasn’t very much left at all by the time I got there. A couple of hostas, an ophiopogon (Black Mondo) for the rockery and a Lysimachia Firecracker. I already had an apple tree that I’d picked up from Quercus Plants en route filling my wee mini – it was like a jungle driving home.

Drumelzier Old Manse

Did I mention that I LOVE my job…

Drumelzier Old Manse

Dunninald Castle

The rain showed no sign of abating but we were not to be deterred from our mission. Following Pitmuies, we headed along to Dunninald Castle, where not only did we get a brief period of light drizzle, we were also treated to a guided tour by owner Mary AND she gave us lunch #winning!

100s of acres of woods, a walled garden with a listed greenhouse, an ancient beech avenue which was awash with bluebells (in Winter it’s a great place to see snowdrops in abundance too).

Here are some photos to whet the appetite…

Dunninald CastleBeech avenue at Dunninald CastleBeech avenue at Dunninald castleWalled garden at Dunninald Castle Walled Garden at Dunninald Castle Walled Garden at Dunninald Castle Listed greenhouse

The Herbalist’s Garden in Angus

Disclaimer – this is actually my boss’s garden and I’ve been dying to visit after seeing it in a recent press article. Handily, our recent tour around Scotland made it the perfect place to pitch camp so we got to have a good look around.

Victorian Greenhouse
Inside the greenhouse
Victorian Greenhouse
Inside the greenhouse

I have both serious greenhouse and walled garden envy, and raised beds and polytunnel envy for that matter! In fact, this is precisely the type of garden I would love one day.

The Herbalist's Garden
The Herbalist’s Garden
Vegetable Garden
Vegetable Garden

The physic garden is so interesting, everything is handily labelled so you can see what ailments the medicinal herbs can be used to treat. The pollinators must be going wild in here just now.

The Herbalist's Garden
The Herbalist’s Garden

As if that’s not enough there’s woodland, a lovely lake, highland cows, pigs and chickens too and everything is organic.


I would definitely recommend a visit here – all you need do is email herbalistsgarden@gmail.com and they will happily show you around during the months of June, July and August – more info here.

Highland Cow


Garden Bagging – Threave

Threave has been on my ‘to visit’ list for a few years, ever since one of my gardening club friends told me about it – it’s the National Trust’s Training Centre for future Professional Gardeners and is home to the School of Heritage Gardening.

Based just outside Castle Douglas, down in Dumfries and Galloway, it’s not really on the beaten track so when I found out one of our Regional Meetings was going to be held there I was more than happy to head along.


We had our meeting in the ‘big house’ and then we were lucky enough to get a guided tour of the garden from gardener Brian McMillan. I do love a walled garden but this one was enormous! The produce is used in the cafe and is also on sale to the public.

It’s a wonderful place for wildlife, we saw a Red Squirrel, and it’s also home to Scotland’s only bat reserve. There’s a viewing platform for ospreys and wildfowl as well as wildlife hides in the nature reserve. There’s a visitor centre, plant sale and terrace cafe so it’d be easy to spend a good while here, well worth the trip!

Whilst open throughout the year, it’s open, with proceeds going to Scotland’s Gardens Scheme charities, on Sunday 23rd June.


Newhall Estate – Garden Open Days

The walled garden at Newhall is just lovely – I had serious veggie plot envy last time I was there, so I’m excited to see that it’s open every Wednesday between 2pm and 4.30pm until 27th July as part of Scotland’s Garden Scheme.

Entry £4 (goes to charity). Tea and coffee will be on offer.


The History of The Garden

The Walled Garden was built about 1792 by Robert Brown. Originally such gardens were merely enclosed places in which to grow produce for the kitchen and flowers for the house, but they quickly evolved as places also for quiet perambulation in summer, and in winter to view the exotic fruit growing in the heat of the Glasshouses. The Walled Garden at Newhall has some remarkable features surviving from its earliest years, a heated Melon Pit, a beautifully built tunnel was discovered recently linking the nearby burn to the greenhouse for water supply.

photo 3 (16)


In the centre of the Garden is a statue of Adam, the first gardener, (made of Coadestone) ready to ‘delve’. You may also find – at the top of the Garden – the composite sundial, a round early 18th century table dial with a scrolled stone gnomon (or pointer) on what is probably a late 17th century pedestal of four figures of the seasons. The pedestal has been attributed to James Gifford of West Linton, a local sculptor and pre-dates the garden as it is thought to be from 1708.


The cloverleafed pierced stones and another dated 1796 that you might find near the statue of Adam were brought here from one of Robert Brown’s outlying properties.

The twin busts of Pan and his mother on the South Gatepiers are probably early 18th century.They used to adorn the old entrance to Newhall House.

These are thought to have been cut by an Italian sent for and employed by the Duke of Hamilton and originally to have been on the gateposts between two Pigeon Houses that were once at the front of the house.

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Under the trees to the right of the South Gatepiers can be seen stones that originally formed part of a stone newel or spiral staircase from the old tower-house that still forms the core of Newhall House today. They were removed during the early 19th century extensions and alterations to the house.

photo 3 (17)photo 2 (23)

Newhall Estate is just off the A702 between Penicuik and Carlops.

Newhall House, Carlops, Penicuik EH26 9LY