Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Window Spotting

..and the winner of the 2014 Perth Road Window Competition is ...

Dominic McMichan

Dominic is photographed receiving his prize of a year's family membership from the chairman of the Friends, Mark McGilchrist,and Cllr. Fraser Macpherson.  


Monday, 15 December 2014

Fit for Fifteen

Friday, 2nd January from 11.0  am - 1.0 pm
Weather permitting, we are inviting Friends and their families to celebrate the New Year with a run, walk, or stroll round the Garden followed by drinks and nibbles in the glasshouse. 

Thursday, 11 December 2014

The red squirrels are seen regularly feeding in the Garden at the moment - but they don't stay still long enough to get a decent photo. Any contributions welcome!
This photo courtesy of Jean who works at the Garden.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Walk in the Dark

On a walk in the dark through the Garden children encountered this 
strange beast who followed them back to the Education Centre

Thursday, 4 December 2014

December's plant of the month

Wollemia nobilis (Wollemi Pine)
Family: Araucariaceae    Origin: Australia  Accession: 2007
Find it in the Garden of Evolution

Monday, 1 December 2014

Season’s Greetings – from The Dundee Botanic Garden Endowment Trust

On behalf of Lady Dalhousie and the Trustees of the Dundee Botanic Garden Endowment Trust I would like to take this opportunity to thank the committee and all the Friends of the Dundee Botanic Garden for their support during 2014.
Since joining the Endowment Trust in March of this year much has happened. We are delighted to have Lady Dalhousie as our Patron a truly wonderful Ambassador. We now have a corporate identity with our new logo and leaflet available, and a striking pull up banner.
In September I attended the Dundee Food and Flower Festival courtesy of the ‘Friends’ who allowed me to share their stand, this gesture was greatly appreciated and allowed me to meet many of the members over the three days and gave me the vehicle to begin the promotion of the Trust.
I wrote a letter to every Member of the Friends explaining about the Trust and introducing myself, this coincided with an editorial in the Friends’ Newsletter.
This was followed by our Open Day on Saturday 18th October, a very successful day with almost 700 people attending. Our Main Marquee hosted a very popular Celebrity Gardeners Question Time hosted by Jim McColl, followed by four amazing talks, with the Finale being provided by the University of Dundee Concert Band.
Everything was themed on the Garden and conservation, with the external activities including demonstrations of Woodturning, Willow Weaving, Bees and Honey, Apple Pressing to name a few. The Birds of Prey and the Face Painting were busy from the moment we opened and for those who were working too hard Yu Spa from the Apex were there to promote the benefits of a nice massage.
However the day’s success was also due to the support from many areas and grateful thanks to the staff of the Botanic Garden for all their efforts during the day and with the build-up and breakdown.
Special thanks to the Friends for their support with the pre publicity and all the activities that you supported during the day and appreciation to Frances Tait for co-ordinating all of this.
I am delighted that together we raised the profile of the Endowment Trust and the Botanic Garden. Due to a few very generous and an anonymous donations our Open Day raised in excess of £160,000.00.
If you would like more information on the Dundee Botanic Garden Endowment Trust and how you can support us please do not hesitate to contact me.
I look forward to working with you during 2015 but I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a wonderful time over the Festive Period.
Best wishes
Gordon Ramsay
Trust Development Officer

The Dundee Botanic Garden Endowment Trust is a registered Scottish Charity No. SC044040

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Afternoon lecture

Dr Connolly's thought provoking lecture was well attended and provoked a great deal of discussion. In particular we were made aware of the role we, as gardeners, must play in protecting the future of pollinating insects.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

October's minutes

The minutes of the October committee meeting are now published.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Walk in the Dark

Saturday, 6th December, beginning 4.0 pm in the Education Centre.
The guided walk will be from the Education Centre to the site of the proposed Airport & Estuary Viewing Hide and back and is expected to take about half an hour. It's rare opportunity for children to see the woods in moonlight - and maybe -encounter  some unexpected fauna. Places are limited so please book early- see the "Events" page for details. 

Wednesday, 5 November 2014


Sunday 23 November. At 2pm in the Education Centre at the Garden, Dr Chris Connolly of the Division of Neuroscience at the Medical Research Institute at Ninewells will talk about the potential effects of pesticides on bee learning and health. Friends free; visitors £2.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

November's Plant of the month

Arbutus unedo (Killarney Strawberry Tree)
Family: Ericaceae Origin: Mediterranean, SW Ireland   
Accession: 1981

find it among the Mediterranean plants

Friday, 24 October 2014

August Minutes

The last set of Minutes of the retiring committee are now available. The show is on the road again as new committee held its first meeting last Wednesday. 

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Retiring from the Committee

The long and invaluable service to the committee by Frances ans Sylvia was recognised by past and present members after, typically,  Frances had led a walk round the Garden and Sylvia had managed the Friends' stall. 

Mark presenting Sussex trugs to Sylvia and Frances.

Endowment Trust

Saturday was a glorious day and the Garden looked splendid for the visitors. All the events were popular and well-attended.
Wind up 

Gardeners' Question Time

Face Painting
Birds of prey

Pipe Band

Saturday, 11 October 2014

University Lecture

Wednesday 15 October 
in the D’Arcy Thomson lecture theatre in the University Tower Building 
at 2.15pm
 admission is £2

This year Dr Andy Taylor of the James Hutton Institute will talk on ‘Exploring Scotland’s Forgotten Kingdom’. He will highlight new and exciting research on the fungi in Scotland, including how they respond strongly to climate changes. 

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Launch of the Dundee Botanic Garden Endowment Trust

FREE open day at the Garden on 18 October from 11am to 3pm

Gardeners Question Time, music, talks, face painting, guided tours and much more
Come and meet members of the Friends at our stall in the Marquee
(see the Events page for more details)

Monday, 29 September 2014


Led by Claire, Sunday's prorogation workshop was 
a great opportunity for a coal-face experience!

Thursday, 25 September 2014


On a lovely evening, around 30 Friends enjoyed a walk,
 led by the Curator, round the Garden's water sources prior to the AGM. 
(Note: the Chairman's Report and the Endowment Trustee's Report are also posted)

Sunday, 21 September 2014


that the AGM will be held this Wednesday, 24th September! 
 Alasdair's walk begins at 5.30 PM

It's not too late to book for Claire's Propagation Workshop on the 28th September. Look at the Events page for more details. 

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Dundee Flower and Food Festival

The Friends' Stand
This year the Friends' shared their stand with the newly formed Endowment Trust.
The display was awarded a silver medal. 

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

September's Plant of the Month

Clerodendrum bungei 
(Rose Glory Bower)
Family: Lamiaceae   Origin: China  Accession: 1975
find it among  the Australasian plants

Saturday, 23 August 2014


The Minutes for the second of the July meetings are now posted. 

Friday, 22 August 2014

Advance notice - Propagation workshop in the Garden

Sunday 28 September. Propagation workshop led by Clare Reaney, Horticultural Technician at the Garden. The workshop will be held in the glasshouse in the Garden (meet at Reception in the main building) from 2-4pm and take the format of a “walk and talk” in the garden to discuss suitable plants for autumn propagation, followed by a practical session. Cost free to members of the Friends; non-members £5. Wear suitable clothing and bring your own secateurs and gloves. Numbers are limited to 15 so booking essential. Please book by Thursday 18 September - email Alison Gordon alisongordon49@gmail.com or telephone 01382 350990.

Please share this with friends and family if you think they would be interested.

Friday, 8 August 2014

August's flower

Eucryphia glutinosa (Guindo Santo)

Family: Cunoniaceae: Origin: Chile: Accession: 1978
find it opposite the Education Centre

Thursday, 31 July 2014

Committee members

We are looking for five Friends to join the committee for the next session to replace members who are retiring. Please  consider standing or persuading a friend to stand - the nomination form will arrive shortly along with the notice of September's AGM


The Minutes of July's committee meeting are posted.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Friends' visit to Kellie Castle Wednesday 16 July

I regret to say the visit to Kellie Castle gardens next week has been cancelled, due to lack of numbers wishing to go.
If there are any gardens which any of you would like to suggest for a future visit, please let the committee know and we can consider them.
Alison Gordon

Saturday, 5 July 2014

July Plant of the Month

Leptospermum lanigerum (Woolly Tea Tree)
Family: Myrtaceae    Origin: Tasmania & SE Australia   Accession: 1982
find it among the Australasian plants

Friday, 4 July 2014


The minutes of May's committee meeting are now posted.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Endowment Trust

The Dundee Botanic Gardens Endowment Trust and ShortbreadStories is hosting a day-long writing course entitled 'The Nature of Narrative' set in the beautiful Dundee Botanic Garden.
This course is for the beginning writer, professional novelist, or curious enthusiast. Using a combination of lecture, writing exercises, group interaction, and free writing-time, this class will explore how natural surroundings can inspire language, setting, character and plot. The class will be taught by Rachel Marsh, ShortbreadStories Chief Executive Trustee and creative writing tutor (marshrachel.wordpress.com).

This class is a fundraising event, with half the class fees being donated to the Dundee Botanic Gardens Endowment Trust and the other half donated to the educational writing charity, ShortbreadStories.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Great Day on the Green!

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Hooray - the solar panels are installed on the Macro Micro Building in the Garden!

Sunday, 1 June 2014


The Minutes of April's committee meeting are now published.

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Meconopsis looking good in the Garden - as a volunteer it is very gratifying to see what you handled as a tiny seedling grow into something like this!

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Plant Sale - 17th May

Garden Visit

The visit to Frances's garden -  one of the best kept secrets of the West End -  was a great success. The plants were outstanding and the sun shone!

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Friends of the Botanic Garden - our plant sale is this Saturday, 17 May, from 12 noon to 3pm, in the Garden
Do  come along and see what we have to offer.
Also in the Garden - Plant Power. Click on the the tab above to see more.

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Riverside Nature Park

Welcome back our Summer visitor. Come along and spot  old residents and new arrivals. Keen birders have spotted 135 species at the Park since it opened.
The Friends of Riverside Nature Park are hosting bird-watching events:
Sunday 4 May at 6:00 am to witness the  Dawn Chorus 
and on Saturday, 3  May at 8.30 am for a Guided Walk. 

Please wear suitable clothing and footwear. 
Free event and all welcome. 
Meet at car park, Wright Avenue. 
Binoculars, birding scopes and field guides would be 
useful but not vital. 

For further information please contact: 

Natalie Mackland 
Email: natalie.mackland@dundeecity.gov.ukTelephone: 435873 

Monday, 28 April 2014

The Work of the Woodland Trust in Scotland

10 members of the Friends enjoyed an excellent talk from Jim Christie of the Woodland Trust Scotland on Thursday 24th April, focusing on the work done by the Trust at Glen Devon, east of Dollar, and at Glen Finglas, west of Callander. 
Jim's wide ranging talk covered the effects of humans and animals on the demise of the native forests, and how the Trust is restoring them.
The UK is one of the least wooded countries in Europe, and the Trust aims to improve that.
We heard how they use cattle (trampling the ground making it receptive to seed germination), and children (local schools are invited to help with tree planting, on the basis that these children will be the future custodians of the woods).
We heard how the vole population exploded when sheep numbers at Glen Finglas were drastically reduced, because the vole burrows were undisturbed by sheep hooves, and how perching poles had to be put up for raptors to control the voles.
From Jim's photographs we saw how discreet the Woodland Trust access roads are compared to those for the nearby wind farm.
We heard about planting wildflowers in Geordie's wood at Glen Devon.
Just a few snippets of information from a most interesting talk.

Thursday, 17 April 2014


February's minutes are now posted. The next committee meeting is at the end of May.

The Work of the Woodland Trust in Scotland

Thursday, 24th April 2014 at 7pm - 8pm
Education Centre, Dundee University Botanic Garden
On Thursday 24 April Jim Christie of the Woodland Trust will give a talk at the Education Centre at the Garden at 7pm. Jim is a voluntary warden at the Woodland Trust’s Glen Devon site, and was instrumental in setting the site up. Friends of the garden free, visitors £2.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Plant Sale

Plant Power

The Garden is hosting a day of activities for all the family 
Saturday, 17th May from 10 am - 4.0 pm
Entrance to the Garden is free during these times. 

Don't miss the key event 


from 12.0 AM - 3.0 PM

see the poster on the Plant Power page for further details

Fun Run

This year the 

5K Fun Run 

will take place on Thursday,  15th May, beginning at 7.30 PM.
Entry £5 payable on the night. 

The Run is open to all levels of ability and offers a unique opportunity
 to enjoy this remarkable setting. 

In association with the Institute of Sport and Exercise

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

April:Plant of the Month

Rhododendron uvariifolium ‘Yangtse Bend’

Family: Ericaceae   Origin: China    Accession: 1976

find it among the Asian Plants

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

This Saturday!

Saturday, March 29th, at 2.0 PM Plant Heritage Lecture; 
Professor Michael Tooley will give a talk on “Gertrude Jekyll and the plants she bred at Munstead Wood”. Admission is £5 and booking is essential. Contact Frances Tait 01382 665719

Saturday, 1 March 2014

March plant of the month

Cornus mas (Cornelian cherry)
Family: Cornaceae   Origin: Central & Southern Europe   Accession: 1975

find it north of Loch Macar
Cornus mas is a hardy deciduous shrub up to 4m in height and spread, with oval leaves turning purple in autumn. Small clusters of tiny flowers each with 4 bright yellow petals open in late winter before the leaves appear, to be followed by glossy red, cherry-like fruits. The fruit is edible, it has an acidic flavour and is mainly used for making jam. In Azerbaijan and Armenia, the fruit is used for distilling vodka. It is often used as a medicine in Eastern Europe, being high in Vitamin C. The wood of C. mas is extremely dense and has traditionally been used for making weapons and tool handles

Thursday, 20 February 2014


January's minutes are now ready to view. Our next meeting is on 
16th April so the Minutes for February won't be published until then. 

Thursday, 6 February 2014


Ideas for the Small Garden

Local Garden Designer Alison Hogg will discuss the topic and answer your questions
on Sunday, 16th February
at 2.00 PM
in the Education Centre

The event is free to Friends and £2 for visitors

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

February's Plant of the Month

Callistemon citrinus ‘Splendens’ (Bottlebrush)

Family: Myrtaceae     Origin: Australia      Accession: 1976
find it in the temperate glasshouse

Tuesday, 21 January 2014


On Monday evening the Chair and committee members of the Harris Academy Adult Education Group presented a cheque to the Friends, represented here by Donald, Sylvia, Frances, and Pam, on the disbandment of the charity  The Friends of Balgay also benefited from a donation. 

Thursday, 16 January 2014


Ideas for the Small Garden

Local Garden Designer Alison Hogg will discuss the topic and answer your questions
on Sunday, 16th February
at 2.00 PM
in the Education Centre

The event is free to Friends and £2 for visitors


The Minutes of the November meeting are now available.

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Happy New Year!

Phormium tenax (New Zealand flax, harakeke

Family: Xanthorrhoeaceae  Origin: New Zealand  Accession: 1979

Location:Australasian plants
It is native to New Zealand and Norfolk Island. The long fibres extracted from its leaves were widely used, originally in Māori traditional textiles and also in rope and sail making after the arrival of Europeans up until at least WWII. It is an invasive species in some of the Pacific islands and in Australia.