Autumn and winter highlights at Dawyck

In autumn and winter, Dawyck is a haven of peace in which to appreciate the rich colours and golden light of autumn. Occasional snowfalls transform the Garden and as the snow melts, up pop the snowdrops in their thousands.

Snowdrops on the banks of the Scrape Burn

Autumn fruits take on an almost infinite variety of shapes, colours and textures, from acorns in cups and colourful crab apples to maple keys and fir cones.

Of deciduous trees, the beeches dominate Dawyck in autumn as in spring, their lettuce green now changed to a foxy red-brown. Among the fallen leaves are the lobed, woody husks of the beech nuts which have a prickly outer layer and a velvety lining of greenish-gold hairs to protect the pair of triangular nuts.

Everyone's favourites among autumn fruits are the conkers produced by the Garden's horse chestnut trees.

Overhanging Scrape Glen is a large Japanese katsura tree which in early autumn fills the air with a caramel scent as its leaves turn a pale biscuit colour. As autumn advances the Japanese maples and spindles stand out with their colourful foliage.

The Scrape Glen in autumn

Scrape Glen has some very unusual trees and shrubs - visitors should try to locate the Kalopanax pictus var. maximowiczii. It is the only species in a genus that belongs to the ivy family.

Birch trees can be found on the grassy plateau to the south of the Chapel and one of the best for autumn colour is the yellow birch from North America. It has large leaves which turn bright yellow before falling and when fresh, they are aromatic, smelling like oil of wintergreen.

Read more about Spring and Summer highlights at Dawyck 

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