Grounds of Balmaclellan House to open to the public for Scotland’s Gardens Scheme

The gardens of Balmaclellan House will be open to the public this weekend for Scotland’s Gardens Scheme.

The landscaped gardens are well worth a visit and of particular interest is a formal garden created in 2011 on the site of an old tennis court.

It sits within the six acre woodland garden and its design is based on the Balmaclellan Mirror, a very early Iron Age mirror made of bronze found nearby and currently in the National Museum of Scotland.

The mirror was part of a hoard of items found at Balmaclellan in the 19th century spread across four separate parcels wrapped in coarse, linen cloth.

The decoration on the mirror was considered to be so evocative of Scottish Iron Age art that it appeared on the frontispiece of Scotland in Pagan Times by Joseph Anderson, keeper of the National Museum of Antiquaries of Scotland.

The mirror is represented in the garden by a raised pond and other decorative features on the original are replicated by raised beds and granite setts. While the planting has been designed to give year round interest, it is particularly vibrant at this time of year with daffodils and tulips providing a colourful display.

A small wooden building dating back to 1896 is where the resident minister is said to have written his sermons. It is still an inspiring location with granite seats at strategic points in the woodland walks to take in the lovely views over the Rhins of Kells.

The garden will be open on Sunday, April 24 from 12noon to 4pm.

Homemade teas and plant sales will be available. Admission is £5, children free and proceeds will go the Glenkens Community and Arts Trust.

Balmaclellan House can be found on the B7075, just off the A712 approximately 14 miles north of Castle Douglas.

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