We did not set out to find either wildflowers or gardens in Scotland.

These photos represent just a few of those we happened to see along the way.

 

Wildflowers

Bluebells on a Hill near Culloden

 

 

No flower we saw was so lovely as bluebells.


Bluebells, Pink Campion,
and Unknown, in the Trossachs


Bluebells at Loch Ness


Bluebells in the Trossachs
(Don't Miss the Wee Beastie)

 


Bluebells
on the Isle of Skye


Heather
at Culloden

 


Gorse at Loch Ness


Scotch Broom at Loch Lomond


Gorse on the Cardross Road

At first glance, gorse and broom may appear to be one and the same.
However, broom grows in a more vertical direction while gorse is more compact,
and the flower of the broom is a more delicate shade of yellow.

 

Cultivated Flowers

 


Rhododendron at Armadale Castle
on the Isle of Skye


Clematis at Armadale Castle

 


The Garden at Balloch Castle
by Loch Lomond

Another rhododendron at Armadale was fully thirty feet high, but its blossoms were spent, leaving it less than attractive.

 

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Heather ordinarily is seen in August, and thistle blooms in July, as well presumably as in winter.
While we have no photographs of Scotch Thistle to share,
you may enjoy the following "Legend of the Thistle" and anonymous poem.

 

The Legend of The Thistle

 

 

  adopted as Scotland’s national emblem over 800 years ago,
the Thistle recalls the legend from ancient days
that it saved a group of weary Scottish warriors from invaders.

 

Beginning in 794 A.D. and for a period of more than 300 years,
the Vikings of Denmark repeatedly invaded
the islands and coastlands of Scotland.
On one occasion, as night fell and Scottish warriors
rested in a field, a Viking raiding party crept up to attack them.
The darkness proved more an enemy than a friend since it hid
from the invaders’ eyes the bed of thistles
on the ground before them.  The thorny plants
pierced the bare feet of the Vikings,
causing them to cry out in pain, awaken the Scots,
and bring destruction upon themselves.

 

The Thistle is a fitting emblem for the people of Scotland,
who for many centuries have survived the harshest conditions
and the cruelest tyrants.

The Thistle of Scotia

Let The lily of France in luxuriance bloom,
Let the shamrock of Erin its beauty maintain,
Let the rose of fair England still waft its perfume,
But the Thistle of Scotia will dearest remain.

'Twas the badge that our fathers triumphantly wore
When they followed their sovereigns to vanquish the Dane,
The emblem our Wallace in battle aye bore;
Then the Thistle of Scotia must dearest remain.

It blooms on our mountains, it blooms in the vale,
It blooms in the winter, in snow, and in rain;
The type of her sons when rude seasons assail ~
To Scotia, her thistle will dearest remain.

Author Unknown

       

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