Monday, 8 March 2010

Scottish Garden Visits (5)

Edinburgh Botanical Garden saw many families wandering through it yesterday afternoon. We joined them. A blue sky and light winter sunshine brought us all outdoors. The garden was full of chatter from people and its resident birds.


Palm House, water falling through Chinese Garden,
Temperate House with Eucalyptus in front.
Clicking on photo montages will enlarge them.


I have to confess, despite the comments from my daughter suggesting it was mad that so many people were visiting a dead garden, I do enjoy visiting winter gardens. I love to see the skeleton branches on shrubs and trees. I also love the ‘see through’ aspects they offer.

Twiggy and dead looking branches.
Sculptural twiggy plant supports ready for plants in long border.
Gunnera with winter duvet of leaves.


Yes, perhaps you need to look a little closer to see new plant life emerging for the year but that’s exactly what I do enjoy about visiting them. That and seeing the overall winter structure of the garden including its hedges, walls and buildings.

Spring flowers and blossom.
Wonderful warm leaf colour from Bergenia.


Water in a winter garden is a huge plus too. On a bright day it reflects wonderful light and on a frosty or cold one the ice adds so much interest too. As I plan to build a new pond this year I was interested in the edges of any areas with water. To be completely honest I am a bit apprehensive about starting it.

Chinese Garden views. Pagoda pool, tumbling water,
dense planting below and through shrubs.
City view from above Chinese Garden shows
Edinburgh Castle in the distance.


Once the weather breaks and the soil is easily dug I’ll get out there and make a start. I know I need to get physically in the space get a ‘feel’ of where I want to go before I can make a master plan. For the moment, I’m just absorbing all spaces I come across in the hope that all my individual thoughts will come together.

Mature tree branches catching sunlight.
Hellebores and Iris hug ground.
Bulbs and Alpines grown in clay pots
plunged into sand filled benches in Alpine House.
Pity about the mesh grid protection from human hands.


It’s been a while since I’ve posted a series of montages. I’ve enjoyed doing them. They are a great way to share a small flavour of a visit like this. There is another reason I’ve chosen to use them though. I’ll explain more shortly. I had another Garden Visit posting planned. All my photos are uploaded but unfortunately I'm going to have to reconsider my choices and start this one again.

Here’s hoping it was nice with you at the weekend too and you managed to get outside :-D


All photos above were taken at Edinburgh Botanical Gardens on March 7th 2010.

15 comments:

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Wonderful tour Shirl. I got out in the garden the first time this year yesterday. I hope the fog lifts this a.m. and I can get back out there. So much to do. I too am thinking about a new project. I hope it comes together in my mind soon.

lotusleaf said...

Very interesting to see a winter garden. I liked the new seedlings starting bravely.I hope your new pond will give you joy:-)

Patsi 'Garden Endeavors' said...

Skeleton branches on shrubs and trees create much interset. Even though all things may not be at their best as most people would think...they have intriguing qualities. And always new blooms excite all.
Winter has it's own wonders.

ShySongbird said...

A lovely visit Shirl, I enjoyed sharing it with you. It was nice to see all the colourful photos and great to see one of my favourites included, the Winter Flowering Aconite, it always looks so bright and cheerful.

I also enjoyed the 'First Visits' post and hope you get some permanent tenants eventually :)

mothernaturesgarden said...

I like to see the bare bones of the garden also. The palm house architecture has my attention.

The Early Birder said...

Lovely visit and montages Shirl. I've spent the last two days looking at my skeleton garden, checking for signs of life and forming a few ideas. FAB.

shirl said...

Hi there Lisa, Lotusleaf, Patsi, Jan, Donna and Frank :-)

Lisa, glad you enjoyed it. Ah… I see you enjoyed get out in your garden too :-D

Lotusleaf, I guess our winters are quite different. Thanks, I am looking forward to working on my new pond :-D

Patsi, I couldn’t agree more :-D

Jan, nice to see you. Always a delight to share these visits. I agree about the cheeriness of the aconite. Hoped you’d catch the nestbox visits :-D

Donna, ah… the Palmhouse is wonderful inside too :-D

Frank, thanks I’ll be using montages a lot more in the future. Good for you… I’m frightened to look at parts of mine like the rocks displaced around an original rock garden to make room for a new pond ;-)

Jim/ArtofGardening said...

I was there in spring one year -- you're right, it's also interesting to see the winter version. I especially liked the hypertufa troughs with the alpine plants. I went looking for a picture of them in your post but didn't see nay.

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

Very pretty winter gardens! I think winter gardens have so many other interests besides relying on just flowers. You can see the form of the trees and shrubs so much more. I enjoyed all of the collages.
I'm looking forward to seeing your new pond get started!

Shady Gardener said...

Thanks for the tour, Shirl. I like that we actually share some of the same plants. Your Winter tour was nice. We've just gotten rid of(but maybe not quite finished with) our snow! It's been 40's and even a 50 degree F day this week. A little rain also helped. :-) Looking forward to Spring!

Mel said...

Hi Shirl!
What a nice post, makes me want to be there among those beauties :)
Besos,
Mel

Carolyn Gail said...

Fantastic, Shirl. Great to see such beauty from the land of my Scot-Irish ancestry.

I can never forget the wonderful tour I had of your beautiful country and its marvelous scenery.

Thanks for sharing.

shirl said...

Hi again, Jim, Catherine, Shady, Mel and Carolyn :-)

Jim, sorry I did walk through the troughs but on this occasion didn’t photograph them as there were families about at the time. I’ll try to remember and photograph them next time for you :-D

Catherine, glad you enjoyed the winter tour. I still cannot believe you have bleeding heart flowering in your garden at the moment! I was out yesterday walking around the area for my new pond. At the moment I have a bright yellow hosepipe marking out a rough pond shape and bamboo pegs with orange twine following lines from surrounding borders and beds. I’m trying to visualise the pond from all angles and paths before I start digging it. Hopefully, I’ll have a few photos for the end of the month :-D

Shady, delighted you could join me. I know how you feel about the snow. In my head I haven’t ruled out a return here too. Fingers crossed we’ve both seen the last of it for this year. Spring will be most welcome to us all :-D

Mel, good to see you again. I expect you are very busy at the moment. Looking forward to following your move. Your mountains look beautiful :-D

Carolyn, how wonderful to be able to share something with your roots. Great to hear you enjoyed your visit to Scotland. Haste ye back :-D

Orchids and Nature said...

Lovely photos of the early spring flowers in your garden especially the crocus, mine have been poor so far.

shirl said...

Hello again, David.Glad you enjoyed them. Since this I’ve seen some wonderful blankets of crocus. Have to say I can’t believe the number of frogs you have in your pond just now!