Alpines are any small hardy plants suitable for growing in a rock garden or a similarly small area, such as in stone troughs or crevices in paths or walls. Alpine plants are those found at high altitudes between the tree line and the permanent snow line. Alpines grow in the varied habitats found in this zone: high meadow, rocky outcrops, cliffs, bogs and screes.

Views inside the Alpine House at RBGE.Alpines typically have dwarf, compact growth habits, which protect them against strong winds, extreme cold and heavy layers of snow. Many are slow-growing, with dense shoots and tough, small leaves that reduce the loss of heat and moisture. As an economy measure, the leaves are often long-lived: in Cassiope, individual leaves may function for 15 years.

The collection of alpines at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is one of the best in the world. It includes a wide range of plants, from dwarf perennial trees and shrubs to bulbs, succulents and orchids. The Garden's collection comes from mountainous regions all over the world, from Scotland and the permafrost regions of the Arctic to South Africa and New Zealand and are displayed in the Rock Garden, and our Traditional Alpine House along with our New Modern Alpine House

Other garden features include....

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Views inside the Alpine House at RBGE.

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