Outdoors: Five great botanical gardens to visit

Inverness Botanic Gardens have a wide variety of plant life on offer for visitors to have a look at. Boasting the ‘hottest spot in the Highlands’ their Tropical House is hot all year round to accommodate the collection of plants native to Mexico, Bahamas and northern Brazil, which flower throughout the year. Take a look at their selection of coffee, banana, ginger and pineapple plants. The Tropical House also features a waterfall leading into a pond filled with Carp, surrounded by a variety of foreign plants including birds of paradise and orchids. Or, take a trip to their Cactus House, featuring a variety of cacti and succulents including agave and aloe vera, along with some familiar house plants and others native to the drier parts of the world. Or, for a more classic experience, visit the most northerly gardens in Scotland full of plants from Scotland.

Inverness Botanic Gardens, Bught Lane, Inverness IV3 5SS

Entry is free

St Andrews Botanic Gardens

Sitting just outside of the bustling town centre in St Andrews is their botanic garden known globally for its important botanic collection. Initially the garden was founded by the university in 1889 and has grown since then to a sizeable 18.5 acres of garden. Not only does the garden aim to be a relaxing and enjoyable environment but also to be a scientific garden for teaching and research. They have a variety of gardens within including a Peace Garden – created to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the UN – and a Rock Garden – one of the harshest environments on the planet. The garden also features a tea room serving teas, coffees and Jannettas ice cream.

Open every day from 10am-4pm

St Andrews Botanic Garden, Canongate, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 8RT

Entry is £6 for adults, £5.50 concessions and students and under-18s go free

Glasgow Botanic Gardens

Founded over 200 years ago, the Glasgow Botanic Gardens have lived through a lot of history. Located in the West End of Glasgow, the gardens are managed by the council. Arguably its most prominent feature is the Kibble Palace, a huge glasshouse designed by John Kibble which houses the

garden’s national collection of tree ferns. The gardens also have several self led trails that visitors can follow. The Glasgow Botanic Gardens also have a tearoom on offer open throughout the year.

The gardens are open from 7am until dusk all year round, the glasshouses are open from 10am-6pm (4.15pm in the winter)

Glasgow Botanic Gardens, 730 Great Western Road, Glasgow, G12 0UE

Entry to the gardens is free

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

The Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh has a whopping 70 acres of garden for visitors to explore, all just a mile away from the heart of the city. The garden’s ten glasshouses are home to over 3000 exotic species of plants from across the globe. The garden also offers visitors the chance to witness some incredible panoramic views of Edinburgh, including the castle. Other attractions that are worth checking out are the Rock Garden and the Pond. Visitors are promised to leave the gardens with a deeper appreciation and understanding of the importance plants play in our lives and in our world.

The garden is open daily from 10am-5pm

The Royal Botanic Garden, 20a Inverleith Row, Edinburgh EH3 5LR

While entry to the garden is free, entry to the glasshouse varies from £5.40 to £7

Dawyck Botanic Garden

Equally as impressive is Dawyck Botanic Garden, with 65 acres of greenery nestled in the hills of the Scottish Borders. The garden features plants from regions such as Europe, China, Nepal, Japan and North America. The Garden is renowned for its seasonal displays, with plants such as snowdrops, bluebells and blue poppies able to be seen at various points throughout the year. Some of the features of the garden include Heritage Trees, their Azaelea Terrace and their Heron Wood Reserve, among many others.

The garden is open daily from 10am-5pm

Stobo, near Peebles, Scottish Borders, EH45 9JU

Entry varies from £5.40 to £7

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