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Open 10am–4pm, Wed–Sun, 1 Apr–30 Sep.

BACKHOUSE AT ROSSIE ESTATE

Partner Garden
Free access for RHS members at selected times

Collessie
Ladybank
Fife
KY15 7UZ

2 acres (0.8ha)

Tel
0844 414 5803

Visit website

Admission

Non-member adult £5.50 (see website for more information).

RHS members

Free access (Member 1 only) - Fri when open.

National Gardening Scheme dates

Please see NGS website

Facilities

  • Baby changing facilities
  • Café
  • Children's activities
  • Disabled access
  • Disabled facilities
  • Gift shop
  • Group rates
  • Guide dogs only
  • Parking
  • Plants for sale
  • Restaurant
  • Toilets

Features

  • Champion trees
  • Colour themed borders
  • Cottage planting
  • Glasshouse (open to public)
  • Gravel garden
  • Herbaceous border
  • National Plant Collections
  • Pond or lake
  • Rock garden
  • Sculpture
  • Water garden
  • Wildlife planting and features
  • Woodland

About the garden

Owned by
Andrew & Caroline Thomson

The historic Walled Garden, with themes of art and science, offers the opportunity to take a step back and relax among the changing seasonal plantings, enjoy the longest scented rose archway in Scotland over a ‘DNA’ pathway that includes a central flower bed constructed from the cathedral stone of a rose window.

Discover yew-backed herbaceous borders filled with wispy grasses and colourful perennials, rare plants, unusual shade borders, interesting shrubs and champion trees. A mesmeric water feature, rill and formal pond function as a reservoir supporting the garden’s watering requirements. Culinary and medicinal herbs, vegetables, soft fruit and cut flowers fill the potager with old espaliered fruit trees trained on the stone walls and Victorian glasshouses.

Find out about the historic Loch that disappeared, see the Covenanter’s ruined Woodland tomb, discover the family’s links to Mary Queen of Scots and horticultural links to Charles Darwin. For the young at heart, scamper along the delightful Bear Walk, with carved animals under the dappled shade of native trees, nine-hole family putting and grass labyrinth. The Garden Café uses produce from the estate, when possible, on the seasonal freshly cooked menu that includes the estate’s own pressed apples for a refreshing drink. Special pre-ordered afternoon tea is also offered when in season.

The family have restored the garden over the past 14 years. The Backhouse Education & Exhibition Centre tells the story of their forebears, the famous Quaker Backhouse family of botanists and bankers, whose ground-breaking achievements are being brought back to life by this sixth generation. Their forebears first dreamed of establishing the Backhouse Nursery in Scotland and is now being realised at Rossie Estate in Fife. The families National Collection of Narcissus 'Backhouse' cultivars bloom in spring and is the catalyst for Scotland’s Daffodil Festival held in mid-April each year.

Plants of special interest

  • Alliums
  • Alpines
  • Autumn bulbs
  • Begonias
  • Cut flowers
  • Daffodils
  • Dahlias
  • Delphiniums
  • Ferns
  • Fruit blossom
  • Fruit bushes/trees
  • Heathers
  • Herbs
  • Hostas
  • Irises
  • Lilies
  • Maple
  • Roses
  • Shade-loving plants
  • Spring bulbs
  • Sweet peas
  • Wildflowers

Get involved

We're a UK charity established to share the best in gardening. We want to enrich everyone's life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.