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Garden of the Season – Kirklands

May 3rd 2022

Why Should We Visit Kirklands

This two-acre garden and adjoining 20 acres of natural woodland have been lovingly restored by the present owners who have packed it with interesting and colourful plants. There’s lots to discover, especially in spring when bulbs and blossom are in flower. Despite being a sloping site, the garden is accessible for wheelchairs and pushchairs and with a picnic area, toilets and dog-friendly policy, it’s a great spot for a day out.

Story of the Garden

Kirlands was built in 1832 on the site of a much older house, but when Peter and Gill Hart arrived here in 1977 the garden was completely overgrown and a couple of ponies were grazing in the walled garden. Dutch Elm disease had taking hold and many trees had to be felled.

Gradually replanting got underway, walls were repaired and the walled garden was terraced. New areas were developed, a vegetable garden was created and today Kirklands is a thriving garden, full of seasonal interest and with views to the Ochils and the Saline hills.


In spring the woodlands are carpeted with bluebells, fritillaries and trilliums and these are followed by self-seeded martagon lilies. The bulbs appear in successive waves until the canopy of beech and oak trees closes over and the spectacle dies down. Nearby, in the bog garden which is fed by natural springs, giant Gunnera manicata opens its huge leaves above head height while candelabra primulas erupt in a whole spectrum of bright colours. These flourish in the damp soil and their numbers multiply annually.

Don’t Miss

The walled garden is lined with espaliered apple trees while all kinds of vegetables are grown in the raised beds. Salads and strawberries grow in a large polytunnel. The tulips that grow in the Box-edged beds are followed by alliums and a huge Clematis montana smothers a gateway. Every scrap of waste from the garden is returned to the soil through an impressive composting process.



Anything Else To Look Out For

Alpines, dwarf bulbs and low-growing rhododendrons flourish in a large rockery and the herbaceous borders have been planted with flowers to produce a succession of interest from spring until autumn.

Many interesting plants are grown at Kirklands and these are carefully propagated for the nursery area, where visitors can buy plants to take home with them.

Best Time To Visit

Kirklands, with its rhododendrons and Meconopsis (Himalayan blue poppies) is spectacular in spring, but clever planting keeps the show going until the trees change colour and the leaves fall.

Any Recommendations in the Area

Dunfermline Abbey was founded in the 11th century by Queen Margaret, and her remains are buried here. The Abbey was also the final resting place of Robert the Bruce and Charles I was born in the adjacent royal palace. The new church, built after the abbey and palace fell into disrepair, still remains in use today.


From junction 4 of the M90, follow B914 to Saline village.


Open Friday, Saturday and Sunday - 2pm - 4.30pm

£5 (children go free)

Tel: 07787 115477

Courtesy of The Herald