Aeolia Allanfauld Road, Kilsyth G65 9DE (Mr George Murdoch): A third-of-an-acre woodland garden developed since 1960 and designed to have something in flower every month of the year. The garden contains a large variety of mature specimen trees and shrubs, maples, primulas, hardy geraniums and herbaceous plants. Spring bulbs provide early colour and lilies and dahlias provide late season interest. There are a couple of small ponds for wildlife, two greenhouses and a fruit production area. The owner is a member of the Scottish Rhododendron Society and has a collection of over 100 specimens, some grown from seed. Areas of the garden are often under development to provide something new to see and provide material for the extensive plant sale, which is all home grown.
Blackmill Allanfauld Road, Kilsyth G65 9DE (Mr and Mrs A Patrick): Across the road from Aeolia is Blackmill through which the Garrel Burn flows. The garden includes the magnificent seven-metre waterfall with its ever-changing moods throughout the year. On one side of the property, on the site of an old water-powered sickle mill, is an acre of mature specimen trees, rhododendrons and shrubs with an ornamental pond and a rock pool built into the remains of the mill building. Across the burn there is a further two acres of woodland glen with paths along the waterside offering glimpses of the many cascading waterfalls. A large area of wildflowers has been newly introduced alongside the burn. A micro-hydro scheme is on view, along with many different examples of dry stone walls. Visitors remark on the sense of tranquility and peace they experience in the garden and appreciate the works of art created from repurposed stone and salvaged material.
Directions: Turn off the A803 into Parkburn Road up to the crossroads (parking attendant will advise on parking). The 89 bus Glasgow - Kilsyth has a stop at the crossroads a couple of minutes walk to the gardens. The nearest station is Croy, then take the bus 147 or 344 to Kilsyth.
Other details: Admission £6.00 children free. Tea, coffee and box of home baked cakes £3.00, children £1.00. Cash payment or card payments welcome. By arrangement openings for parties of six or more. WC available but not for disabled.