Archive for 14/07/2016


Well when you have one of the world’s great gardens nearby, it’s pretty irresistible. The team at Great Dixter were holding a press day, and although I know the garden very well, there are always things to learn, techniques to observe , new plants to see and the ever-changing plantings to admire. I will do…

via Great Dixter – again — The Enduring Gardener

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IMG_1113Our journey away from Skye featured a slow start- we got stuck behind a convoy of three huge trailers carrying the blades of a wind turbine! After a very good lunch en route we made our way alongside Loch Lomond (it’s rather long!) and eventually reached Helensburgh on the Clyde Estuary and specifically The Hill House. This gem of the National Trust for Scotland is one of the few houses designed by the renowned Art Nouveau Scottish Architect and designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Built in 1902-3, to get close to some original Mackintosh design features- especially in the interior of the house- was a joy. Needless to say the attention to detail- somewhat typical of the ‘architecture for the rich’ at this time- was delightful. Unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to take photographs inside, but here are a few ‘culled’ from the ‘net…

And the gardens didn’t disappoint either, though these had rather less of the Mackintosh touch, the owner of the house probably playing a more important role in shaping its design, features and planting. The garden today is testament to a painstaking programme of restoration and whilst the layout is pretty typical for grand houses of this period- with formal, terraced lawns combined with a series of ‘garden rooms’- it nonetheless was a lovely experience strolling through these in the spring sunshine. It was also nice to be able to buy a few spare plants from the cottage garden, including ‘Jacob’s Ladder’.

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I’d say a ‘must see’ if you’re in this part of Scotland.

Further information: www.nts.org.uk

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