I've been trying to get to Dawyck all of the last month to see the snowdrops, time and weather had so far conspired against me. On Friday, although it was overcast and a bit windy we decided to risk it and go along. From now on the Snowdrops will be starting to go back and I wanted to see them at their best. Luckily for us Dawyck gardens is only half an hour away and a very pleasant drive into Peebleshire. Last year we visited in May to see the Rhododendrons in all their glory, you can read about that visit here.
|Leucojum, also known as Snowflakes in full flower|
Dawyck Gardens are part of Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and one of their satellite gardens. Situated in the hills of Peebleshire it is a fine arboreta set on either side of a stream which tumbles all the way down to the fields at the bottom surrounding Dawyck House. You can read more about RBGE and Dawyck here.
|There were large clumps of Leucojum on either side of the steps |
as you leave the visitor centre and walk into the gardens
|Often mistaken for large snowdrops, these bulbs are worth|
growing in your garden
We walked up the side of the stream under the huge Rhododendrons towards the Dutch Bridge. Evergreen ferns such as Polystichium aculiatum were providing interest under the canopy of Sequoiadendron giganteum and Rhododendron sp. There are lots of signs of growth and buds beginning to burst in this sheltered valley. Some of the gardeners were digging out and dividing huge clumps of hosta in one of the beds.
Once you reach the stone Dutch bridge the swathes of Snowdrops come into view. There is something quite magical about seeing plants on mass like this, naturally, uninterrupted and doing their thing. They continue like this all the way to the top of the valley, where you can cross over and either walk back down the other side or up through the woods at the top of the hill, we did the latter.
|Snowdrops marching up the bankings at Dawyck|
There was plenty water tumbling down the stream adding to the atmosphere and magic of the place. In the photo below you can see the Snowdrops disapearing into the distance on both sides of the stream.
|Snowdrops and waterfalls|
|Corylus tibetics with pink catkins and spiky nut casings and Corylus avellana with yellow catkins|
There are plenty paths to wander around, each time giving you a different view. The small climb to the chapel is worth the effort. Past young Auricaria auricana Monkey Puzzle trees and beautiful white barked Birches. These stand out stark and ghostly amongst the other leafless trees and are one of my favourite trees.
Back down to the bottom of the valley and the way back out to the visitor centre there was a large clump of Butterbur coming into flower. This was the white form and looking very impressive leading down to the waterside. Some basic information about Butterbur here
|Clumps of Butterbur at the valley bottom|
Another burst of colour was from Eranthus hymalis or Winter Aconite. Flowering at the same time as Snowdrops and quite often together as they like the same conditions. I must make efforts in my next garden to plant them together, I have always wanted to yet never got round to it.
|Erathus hymalis or Winter Aconites|
We followed our walk round the garden with lunch in the excellent cafe at Dawyck. I had chick pea curry soup and a roll which was very good. As we were sitting eating we heard the garden had been closed due to the increasing winds, we timed our visit well! As we are not so far from Dawyck now I hope to visit more regularly, I especially want to see the gardens in Autumn, with all those trees the autumn colour will be impressive.
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