The Garden Guide

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

Oxenford Castle

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Aug. 4. - Oxenford Castle; the Earl of Stair. The castle is in a commanding situation, but has the common fault of being entered on the side that has the best views, and showing a stranger not only these, but the whole of the lawn, before he alights at the main entrance. The kitchen-garden is undergoing a thorough reform by Mr. Gardiner, a master in his art. A great many hollies are planted in the young woods, and the plants are protected from hares and rabbits by circular fences, 1.5 ft. high, and 2 ft. 6 in. in diameter, formed entirely of the branches of young larch trees; their ends being stuck in the ground so as to form a circle round the plant, and their points woven into one another, as in the finishing of a common wicker-work hamper. There are a new church, new parsonage, handsome new factor's house, lodges, cottages, farm offices, all seen more or less from the public road, and all most substantially built of stone, and in good taste, at the earl's expense. The Edinburgh approach to the castle is excellent, but the other is less fortunate, showing only one side of the house, instead of coming up to it diagonally, so as to show two sides. Additional to the main door, there is a side or subordinate one, called the luggage door; a characteristic of Scotch mansions, arising, no doubt, from the hospitable habits of the country.