Summer begins imperceptibly at Benmore with late-flowering rhododendrons, azaleas and magnolias coming into bloom as if it were still late spring. At the same time, the dark greens of the conifers are enlivened by tufts and fringes of apple-green new needles and by the presence of flowers.
By mid-summer the sense of newness has faded but there are highlights to come, such as the flowering of Benmore's magnificent eucryphias and desfontaineas against a landscape of purple-heathered mountains.
There are rhododendrons in flower at Benmore right through until August.
The list of summer-flowering trees and shrubs is extensive. It includes interesting species such as the yellow-flowered Jasmimum humile, New Zealand hoherias, American snowdrop trees, oriental snowbells and the epaulette tree which has striking foliage and fragrant white bells.
After rhododendrons and conifers, the eucryphias are the next must-see, as they appear like white fountains among the greenery from July to September.
The areas between the main entrance and Golden Gates, which include the Pond, Formal Garden and the grounds immediately surrouding Benmore House, have been cultivated since the 19th century for ornamental purposes. They contain a mixture of species, including the oldest and largest specimens, among which certain elements of the scientific collection have been planted as space - and aesthetics - permits.