The Garden Guide

Book: Gardening tours by J.C. Loudon 1831-1842
Chapter: Northern England and Southern Scotland in 1841

Allanton Park Planting

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The taste displayed in the grounds at Allanton is in general good. One or two defects have been pointed out by Mr. Nesfield which might be remedied. It is pleasing to see evidence of the enthusiastic delight which Sir Henry must have had in improving his place, in an extensive plantation made at his expense on a hill belonging to an adjoining proprietor. Had this hill remained as it was, a naked moor, it occupies so large a space in the views from the grounds and house at Allanton, that it would have been a sad blemish in a landscape the chief merit of which is being wooded and rich in the midst of a comparatively naked and meagre country. The manner in which the single trees are scattered along the two approach roads, both of considerable length, so as to form foregrounds to the distant scenery, without destroying breadth of effect, deserves to be studied by the gardener; and not less so the manner in which the trees are grouped in the interior of the park. The young plantations here are so thick, that, if not thinned in a very short time, such of them as have been planted as screens will defeat the object, by admitting the light and a view of the public road between their naked stems. The Turkey oak and the Norway maple thrive remarkably well in these plantations, and, what we were rather surprised at, we found a number of trees of Acer hybridum; not, however, so luxuriant as they are in the Horticultural Society's garden, the tree being indigenous on the mountains of Naples. In the kitchen-garden grapes are ripened annually, about the middle of April; the price of coal here being only 4s. per ton. Tile-draining is going extensively forward in the park and farm lands, and is found to pay well, even when it costs 10l. or 12l. per acre. On the whole, we were much gratified with Allanton and with the kind and hospitable reception given our party by Lady Seaton Steuart, who well merits the compliment paid to her by Mr. Nesfield.