Again, the access to education for the Scottish labouring classes was significant…they could study botany and horticulture as well as learning by practice…the renowned plant collector David Douglas (of Douglas Fir fame) is a classic example.
Scotland's links with Europe were also important…Holland and Flanders were historic trading zones, and the University of Leyden attracted a huge number of Scots especially in the 17th century.
In addition to studying law and medicine, they became aware of new developments in the study of plants and this led to the establishment of the first botanical gardens in Edinburgh.
All over the country you can see this great garden tradition flourish in the Botanical Gardens of the towns and cities, in the formal gardens of historic houses like Pitmedden and Crathes in Aberdeenshire, and Culzean Castle in Ayrshire.
A splendid example of quasi tropical abundance is to be found at Inverewe Gardens in Wester Ross where, for the first time in its history, Inverewe House, has opened to the public, revealing a completely renovated, visionary and immersive 1930s house and visitor attraction, as well as The Bothy, which provides visitors with a welcome light refreshments stop in the heart of the spectacular gardens. The Bothy is stocked with locally sourced Scottish produce, making this must visit destination more inviting than ever.