Plants in the Walled Garden include many shrubs, roses such as –
Rosa Albas: Celestial and Great Maidens Blush, Rosa Centifolia: Fantin Latour, Rosa Centifolia Muscosa: Rosa Gallica: Gallica Complicanta, Rosa Mundi and Tuscany Superb, Rosa Rugosa: Blanc Double de Coubert, Frau Dagmar Hartopp, Pink Grootendurst, Alba Roseraie de L ‘Hay, and Sarah Vanfleet. Among other shrubs roses there are Cantabrigenisis, Filipes, Fedschenkoana, Highdownensis, Microphylla, Microphylla Doncasteri, Macrantha, Rubrifolia Scarlet Fire and Virginiana.
On the walls the climbers include Felicite et Perpetue and Wedding Day. There are also several varieties of Potentillas such as Abbotswood, Elizabeth, Catherine Dykes, Mandschurica, Tangerine, Redace, Jackman’s Variety and Whiterain.
Berberis include Atropurpuria Superba, Aurea Rose Glow and Thunbergii. Amongst the shrubs are Rhus Continus, Viburnum Birkwoodii and Davidii, Spiraea Arguta and Bethlehem, Kolkwitzia Amabilis, Cornus Alba, Spiraea Bumaldi Antony Waterer.
The centre of the greenhouse is filled in the spring with the heavy scent of an old Wisteria. Many different greenhouse plants are grown: Geraniums, Begonias, Schizanthus, Pelagoniums, Fuschias and other interesting conservatory plants.
The Wild Garden is at its best in the spring when Snowdrops are followed by massed Daffodils and Bluebells, providing a magnificent carpet of colour A programme of planting continues to complement the many magnificent specimen trees.
An old Larch planted in 1725 is considered by some arboriculturists to be the oldest Larch in Scotland. (See notes in information stand when you visit).
Azalea and Rhododendron beds provide a colourful show in May and a fine Wellingtonia dominates the south comer of the garden- In the fountain area there are collections of Laburnum, Berberis and Acers.
Old pathways indicate that this was part of the garden of the old house. In recent years, the woodland area has been opened up to encourage the growth of Snowdrops, Daffodils and sheets of Bluebells. Beside the green arched bridge, Primula Pulverulenta have been planted, and two Cercidiphyllums (the Katsura Tree) on the bank provide wonderful autumn colour. Rhododendrons, Amelanchiers, Prunus Subhirtella, Autumnalis Rosea – for late autumn or spring colour – and several Prunus Serotina – the Bird Cherry – have been recently planted through the wood. The dramatic plant Gunnera, with its enormous rhubarb-like leaves, some 4-6ft across, dominates the side of the dam. The variety grown here is Manicata. Groups of Bamboos, Astilbes and Cornus Alba – the Red-barked Dogwood – line the side of the burn.
The Majors Walk named after Major Shennan, a family friend who helped Lady Buchan-Hepbum in the early days is planted with Primulas, Meconopsis and Rhododendrons. Smaller trees as Laburnums and Rowans line the path which leads to the Duck Pond. From here, there are spectacular views over the park to the River Tweed and the Leithen hills beyond.
The many different species and acres of the trees provide a home for a rich variety of wild birds.
The River Tweed and the burn that flows through the garden provide an excellent habitat for birds such as the Kingfisher, Heron, Oyster Catcher, Duck and Wagtails and Dippers.
Kailzie Hill rises steeply to the south and the cackling Grouse can often be heard. Moorland varieties such as Curlew, Lapwing, Lark and Cuckoos are frequently seen. Woodcock breed and can be seen and heard rooding over the garden. There are Pheasants and Partridges in the woods and fields. There are also a number of Red Squirrels and other equally pretty, if less welcome visitors in the form of Roe Deer. Sadly Grey Squirrels have been seen in the area. Rabbit numbers are a continuous problem and that murderous creature the Mink inhabits the banks of the Tweed and the large expanse of forestry at Cardrona.