Originally all one property, Logan House was split up into Logan Botanic Garden and Logan House and Garden in the 60s. The botanic garden is now the more famous, but if in the area, Logan House and Garden is most definitely also worth a visit.
The place has a truly epic scale, with no beds of massed, mixed perennials, but only stunningly huge shrubs and towering trees, which gives the whole place a lovely, strange slightly Alice in Wonderland feeling, as if you’ve wandered into the garden of a giant. Araucaria araucana with ruler straight trunks, taller than houses, holding out their long, arrow spiked arms, miles above. Rhododendrons with frilled heads of flowers as big as your hand, and wide lawns presenting an immaculate sweep of spotless green. The whole place is, astonishingly, managed by just one gardener. The size of his task is pretty mind boggling.
The garden is split between the formal, and a much larger woodland area. One it’s most impressive aspects is it’s collection of huge, rare Rhodedendrons, one of which, the ‘Rhodedendron fortunei discolor‘ is actually a UK champion for size.
The grouped heads of the Rhodedendron trees around the lawn make beautiful, cloudy heaps of cherry, cerise and mauve in the sky, punctuated by the spiked leaves of elegant Cordylline australis and lower down, golden swathes of Miscanthus sinensis.
But it is in the woodland area where the gardens charm really lies. Wandering through on a spring afternoon of warm gold, the syrupy light falling through the lush canopy made dappled shadows and there was a deep, resonant peace about the place.
Butter yellow heads of daffodils provided bright touches amongst the myriad greens of feathered fronds of ferns, and laid throughout the woodland was a moss carpet, velvety soft and vibrantly intense.
Here and there, I came upon an old crumbled wall, forgotten amidst the trees and beginning to be reclaimed by the woods, overtaken by the curling tongues of Asplenium scolopendrium and the soft, tumbling mounds of Soleirolia soleirolii.
It is a fairytale woodland, filled with trembling shadows, glittering spots of light, the whisper of rustling leaves and the occasional glimpse of a rainbow headed pheasant, bossily strutting after a mate.
A secluded spot, well off the beaten track, it is certainly worth a visit when in Dumfries and Galloway.
Logan House Details
Adults £4, children free
Logan House Gardens are 14 miles south of Stranraer, adjacent to Logan Botanic Garden
Port Logan, Stranraer DG9 9ND
You can reach it by local bus from Stranraer, or any of the smaller villages along the way to the coast.