castle n exterior wallThe garden at Edzell Castle was planted in the 1930 but reflects the Renaissance ideas of its earlier owner and designer, David Lindsay, and offers some remarkable features. The original castle dating back to the 1100s no longer remains but the building seen there now dates back to the mid 16th century, the same time period that the walled garden was built. Lindsay wanted to create a stimulus for both the mind and the senses and the garden he built carries out his intentions.

As soon as you approach the castle with its garden wall you know that it is something special. Over the entrance is the Lindsay coat of arms and motto, “Dum spiro spero” (“While I breath I hope”).
Garden entrance O

Inside, the garden is planted in a formal Renaissance style with parterres and trimmed hedges.
parterre n wall

In each corner there are hedges planted in various flower shapes including fleur de lis (shown), Scottish thistle, and English rose.
parterre latin saying 2

An interesting note is added by the topiary hedge spelling out the Lindsay’s  motto (“Dum spiro spero”)
topiary letter D

The spectacular wall features niches for flower boxes or sculpture, and birds.
all c niches

The niches are planted with blue and white lobelia and make a stunning sight when they bloom as seen in the photograph by Scoonie on
wall niches flowers plaques F

The wall is also adorned with bas relief panels representing the seven Greco-Roman deities associated with the known planets of the day (Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury and the Moon) on the east wall, the seven liberal arts (Grammatica, Rhetorica, Dialectia, Arithmetica, Musica, Geometria and Astronomia) on the south wall, and the seven cardinal virtues (Fides, Spes, Caritas, Prudentia, Temperantia, Fortitudo and Justitia) on the west wall. The panels are believed to be taken from illustrations in pattern books that were circulated at the time.  Some of the panels have been removed so that they may be saved for posterity.
wall niche plaque

Originally, there was a bath house in one corner but now only slight ruins are visible.
wall corner c niches

To add further interest to the garden, a guest house is was built in a far corner.
guest house interior

If you like castles, castle gardens and unique wall features you will love this garden. The wall features alone are worth the visit.

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By Karen