Yes, this is a post about gardens – but first things first. Coffee and cake! Muckhart is another of Scotland’s Gardens opening for one day for charity – but this time, it was a whole village joining in. Tickets were purchased from the Village Hall, morning coffee (all included) consumed and off we set, map in hand.
5 Golf View
Just up the road from the Hall was the smallest garden on the list, a wildlife friendly cottage garden with vegetables and fruit growing alongside the flowers.
From here, it was a half-mile stroll alongside the golf course to the school. Beautiful views for a walk to school.
Muckhart Primary School
Muckhart has been awarded the best school garden in Clackmannanshire for the last two years, deservedly so. There are obviously a lot of fairies about, and the children had left very helpful directions.
Another half mile walk took us to this mixed herbaceous garden.
Half a mile again and we had completed the circle back to the centre of the village. Hollytree Lodge was the first garden to truly blow us away (and we thought it was enormous until one of our afternoon visits). Some interesting sculptures too.
The Inn at Muckhart
Not a garden, but you know – lunch!
Mount Stuart House
Fortified by good food and drink, we set off by car for Mount Stuart. Walking was not recommended as it’s well out of the village on a twisty narrow road.
Here, I was most impressed by the varied sitting areas, the lovely extension and patio and the multiple ways of having a barbecue (outdoor pit, gas barbecue and that cute little barbecue hut). Sorted for all weathers!
At Yetts o’Muckhart a farmer had opened his yard as a car-park, and from here we were able to do another three gardens on foot. For me, The Steading was the star of the show. It was huge with paths and ponds in the lower section and a large grassy area with a Japanese garden above, all nestling below the Ochil Hills. You can see the date of the house above the small window – 1704.
By the way, if anyone knows what that weird red flower is, please tell me in the comments.
Moss Park Coach House
Country lanes and paths took us to Moss Park Coach House. This garden was only two years old, its owner having “downsized” from the main house by converting the coach house and stables into a home. The garden was created from the paddock and, strangely, we seem to have taken no photographs of it. Obviously, we were mesmerised by the beautiful pink house.
Back along the lane we found Shepherds Cottage, another small cottage-style garden.
Finally we took the car to Balliliesk, partly because it was down the main road which didn’t look too pleasant to walk on and partly because we were almost out of time before the gardens closed at 5pm. The owners moved into this grand house 4 years ago and the garden was described as a work in progress, a nice touch being the hand-drawn map provided to visitors with notes about projects they had undertaken and their future plans.
At £8 for nine gardens, this was a snip for a day out! We also managed to walk several miles and, despite the hearty lunch, work up an appetite for dinner. I therefore feel justified in contributing to Jo’s Monday Walks – follow the link to see stunning Krakow this week.