Garden · Photography · Scotland

Scotland’s Gardens: Logan Botanic Garden

Logan Botanic Garden is one of three regional outposts of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (the other two are Dawyck in the Scottish Borders, and Benmore in Argyll).

Due to its position on the south-west coast of Scotland, Logan experiences the effects of the Gulf Stream, a warm ocean current that runs up Scotland’s west coast. The particular climate of Logan allows plants to flourish there that wouldn’t survive in other parts of Scotland. Tree ferns and palm trees give the garden a tropical feel.

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Cabbage palms by the fish pond at Logan Botanic Garden.
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Tree ferns at Logan Botanic Garden.
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Tree fern leaves and cabbage palm flowers at Logan Botanic Garden.
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Cabbage palms at Logan Botanic Garden.

I’ve been going to the south-west of Scotland on holiday, and visiting Logan Botanics, for as long as I can remember. As a child I was always excited to revisit the terraced garden. I enjoyed running up the flight of broad flat steps lined with palm trees and rhododendrons leading to the top terrace. Logan is home to some species of rhododendron that are so tender they only thrive in a few locations in the UK.

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Steps up to the top terrace at Logan Botanic Garden, with rhododendrons and palms.

In the summer, plants overflow the stonework of the terraces, creating luxuriant tiers of foliage.

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Burgeoning foliage in the terrace garden at Logan Botanics in June.
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Logan Botanic Terrace Garden in June.

Another part of the garden I remember well from my childhood is the gunnera bog. You can’t tell from the pictures below, but at Logan some of these giant rhubarb-like plants are taller than a tall man. Standing under gunnera leaves was part of our holiday tradition.

Some portions of the garden have been designed to showcase plants from specific areas of the world. In recent years a Tasmanian forest was created, which is now maturing into a lush part of the garden quite different from everything else. Earlier this year I noticed a section under construction devoted entirely to plants from Chile.

Some plants need a little more protection than the Gulf Stream provides, and for these Logan’s recently constructed conservatory offers the perfect environment. Completed in 2014, the conservatory houses a rare collection of South African flora.

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Central section of the three-zone conservatory at Logan Botanic Garden.

One of the many wonderful things about Logan Botanic Garden is its cafe, the Potting Shed Bistro, which serves delicious lunches and home baking.

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The Potting Shed Bistro at Logan Botanic Garden.

Some of the fruits, vegetables and seafood come from the small village of Port Logan, less than 2 miles away.

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Baked potato with cheese and red onion marmalade at the Potting Shed Bistro.
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Tomato and cheese quiche with salad at The Potting Shed Bistro.

Logan is the only garden in Scotland to have been awarded both a 5 star visitor attraction status and the Green Tourism Gold Award for sustainability.

The garden is open 7 days a week from 15 March to 31 October from 10:00-17:00, and every Sunday in February from 10:00-16:00 for the Scottish Snowdrop Festival. Admission costs £6.50 for adults, £5.50 for concessions, and children and essential carers get in free. Entry is also free for anyone holding membership of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.

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8 thoughts on “Scotland’s Gardens: Logan Botanic Garden

  1. I so much want to go! I have never managed to get to this part of Scotland and you’ve posted a few things about Dumfries and Galloway that make me long to manage a trip. Thanks, Lorna, for the “armchair travel” in the meantime.

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    1. I think you’d love the gardens in Galloway Christine, I hope you manage to arrange a visit some time. Logan Botanic Garden really is a gem, and the cafe is top notch.

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    1. I know, it’s amazing really. Some of the beaches up north are beautiful. If the north west of Scotland had reliable sunny weather it’d be hotching,. Thankfully it’s nice and quiet and if you happen to be there when it’s warm it’s wonderful.

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