OPEN: April 3rd to September 30th 2019 Backhouse Rossie Estate Garden and Café open 10am – 4pm
Scotland’s Daffodil Festival 2019
13th & 14th April 10am – 4pm
Backhouse Rossie Estate, Fife KY15 7UZ (just off the A91 1.2 miles east of Auchtermuchty)
Discover and Enjoy
Enjoy a unique opportunity, in a Walled Garden, to see the first daffodil cultivars ever created in the UK from the wild Wordsworth style daffodils in a rare Nationally accredited Collection of Daffodils; plus, hundreds of different historic, scented and modern curated daffodils in the grounds. Also see many other seasonal spring flowers, tulips and auriculars.
Heritage and Education Centre
Woodland Daffodil Walk to Covenanters tomb
Bear Walk for the young, Nine hole Putting
Talks and Tours (book your place in advance)
Stalls: Backhouse Nursery, Binny Plants, Quality Daffodils, Grampian Growers, Elmwood College, The Daffodil Society, Plant Heritage, Food and drink, THE DAMN FINE CHEESE COMPANY, Tayport Distillery, Cairn O’ Mohr, charities Marie Curie.
What to See
The Café, Victorian Walled Garden with themes of Art and Science. Longest Rose Archway in Scotland covered in Scented White Roses over DNA Pathway, Ornamental Pond and Water Feature, Potager, Soft Fruits & Veg, Espalier Apple Trees, Colourful Herbaceous Borders, Victorian Glasshouse, Grass Labyrinth, Shade Borders, Woodland Walk to Covenanters ruined Tomb, Bear Walk for the young, Nine Hole Putting, Heritage and Education Centre.
“It was my mother Lady Georgina Buchan-Hepburn who first raised her concerns that the plants raised by our ancestors the Backhouse family of Quaker botanists were becoming lost to time and someone from the family needed to gather together what remained of their 100 years work in horticulture for example of the 956 daffodils registered only 13 were still in commerce in 2008”.
Quaker Interest: For over 12 years as a family we have worked hard to gather our ancestors the Backhouse family of Quaker botanists remaining plants and their history together, some items of family ephemera are on display in the Backhouse Heritage and Education Centre, where visitors can find out about the family history, garden and plants collected, now catalogued, labelled and cared for here.
Our ancestor’s lesser known legacy is the excellent training given to gardeners at the Backhouse family Nursery, who were as a result much sought after, finding positions in many gardens where they shaped the developments we still see today in garden landscapes. The Backhouse family Nursery employed over 110 people in it’s heyday, 10 of whom were women. Fundamentally at the core of the Backhouse Nursery business were the two founding brothers, Thomas and James who had a great interest and love of plants, they sourced, grew and sold exotic and garden worthy bulbs, plants, shrubs and trees as well as their newly created introductions. They were one of the most famous rock garden makers in the country at that time and it has been said “their influence can not be underestimated”.
“I have inherited this love and passion, collecting and growing many plants bred or introduced by our ancestors as part of the family’s Backhouse Heritage project to conserve where possible our ancestor’s horticultural legacy. The re-established family nursery at Backhouse Rossie was first founded by my 4th Great Grandfather and his brother ‘Thomas and James Backhouse Bulbsmen, Nurserymen, Seedsmen, & Florists’, their first intention was for a Nursery in Scotland, so we are pleased to develop their long-held dream at our home in Fife. Alongside the extensive research a National Collection of Narcissus Backhouse cultivars was formed; this heritage legacy project is currently the most northerly location on the developing Quaker Garden Trail.”
Further research is being carried out into the Quaker Plant Hunters, Botanists and Nurserymen’s plant nurseries and related social and economic history, extending the knowledge of Quakers in business with social and working connections between family nurseries, suppliers, and end users. The Quaker Garden Trail offers tangible and historic layers of Quaker connections in the gardens and properties which are still relevant today, shaping our knowledge in the many aspects of horticulture and offering employment and research potential relevant in 2019”.
The National Collection of Narcissus Backhouse cultivars grown at Backhouse Rossie Estate forms part of this conservation and research and is at the core of our heritage project.
At the Backhouse Heritage and Education Centre, we offer master classes in horticulture to us it seems as relevant now as it was to our forebears to pass on gardening knowledge.
What we Offer
Walled Garden & Grounds
Woodland Walk to Covenanters Tomb
Infants Bear Walk
Heritage and Education Centre
Free car park
Group Tours Parking for Buses
Partial wheelchair access
Partial push chair friendly
Toilets, Accessible toilets
Assistance Dogs only in garden
Various seats in the walled garden and grounds offer places for reflection and contemplation.
OPEN: Wednesday to Sunday
CLOSED: Monday & Tuesday except pre-booked groups
TIMES: Open 10am – 4pm closed
RHS Partner Day: Friday (Proof of membership required)
Open Season 2019
3rd April – 30th September