GROWERS from dabblers to pros can enjoy creating attractive displays from rocks, stones and plants.

The tiny alpine plants commonly used in rock gardens can be grown in troughs and small pots – ideal for those with little outdoor space.

Alpines aren’t necessarily from the Alps; they’re plants which live in exposed, mountainous areas above the tree line.

Tough and wind tolerant, they generally withstand Scotland’s changeable climate.

Native wildflowers such as wild basil, snapdragon and rock rose will add colour and attract pollinating insects.

Inverewe Garden
Wester Ross, Highland

Created by landowner Osgood Mackenzie on the rocky edge of Loch Ewe in 1862, the 21-hectare garden near Poolewe features plants from around the world which thrive here thanks to the influence of the North Atlantic current.

The National Trust for Scotland, who manage the gardens, are working with the Scottish Rock Garden Club to offer a joint programme of events exploring rock gardening at the beginning of next month.

On September 4, visitors will have the opportunity to watch experts Canadian Paul Spriggs and Czech Zdenek Zvolanek developing Inverewe’s rock garden with alpines from New Zealand.

Ian Young will talk about rock gardening in containers at the garden’s cafe on September 6, while the following day Spriggs talks about crevice gardens, a contemporary technique using vertical stone slabs and very little soil.

Demonstrations of landscaping using troughs and containers will also place near the rock garden on the 6th and 7th at 2pm, subject to weather. conditions.

Open 9.30am to 6pm daily, near Poolewe, Wester Ross, £12.50 adult, £11.50 concs.

Dunblane Rock Garden
Dunblane, Stirling

The relatively new rock and community gardens offer a peaceful spot from which to enjoy the sound of the Allan Water.

The colourful garden was developed from an overgrown area of ground by the Faery Bridge by Dunblane in Bloom, a group of volunteers which meets every Sunday to weed, litter-pick and maintain the town’s flowerbeds and planters.

This weekend Dunblane hosts the summer event of the Scottish Rock Garden Club, the country’s largest horticultural society.

Barnhill Rock Garden
Broughty Ferry, Dundee

Created in the 1950s on the site of a former nine-hole golf course , the delightful two-hectare park at the beach front is always open to the public.

Owned and maintained by the council with significant support from the Friends of the Barnhill Rock Garden, the garden has seen the development of a scree bed in recent years as well as a woodland area.

Royal Botanic Garden

The highest point of the garden offers views of their extensive rockery which

features over 5,000 plants from mountains around the planet with concentrations of plants from Chile, China, Japan, Europe, North America and South Africa.

The Alpine House protects tiny plants used to wintering under snow, while out in the yard are miniature mountain-top landscapes created in troughs.

New Hopetoun Gardens
Newton Village, West Lothian

The employee-owned New Hopetoun Gardens, between South Queensferry and Linlithgow, features a permanent, south-facing alpine bank. Pick up a leaflet listing the staff’s favourite alpines and plants for walls and tufa, a soft, porous rock ideal for growing lime-loving plants.