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Wester Ross paradise garden put in a whole new light; winter illuminations set for Inverewe Garden

By Hector MacKenzie

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Inverewe illuminated
Inverewe illuminated

A team of academics, students and gardeners have joined forces to transform Inverewe this winter to welcome visitors beyond daylight hours.

The garden, which is protected by conservation charity the National Trust for Scotland, will host Inverewe Illuminated every weekend from November 29 until December 22.

The project is an artistic interpretation of an imaginary underwater journey from the shoreline to the reefs hidden beneath Loch Ewe, which the garden looks out over.

The event will take visitors along an illuminated path, where plants and trees are reimagined as fantastic undersea plants and animals. Light and projection techniques will highlight individual plants that may go unseen during daylight, showing the garden’s stunning plant collection in a whole new light.

The project has been funded by Highlands and Islands Enterprise and the Scottish Funding Council and developed by the artistic team who designed the Botanic Lights event in the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh. The artists have worked with students from MA Lighting Design and MA

Motion Graphics programmes at Edinburgh Napier University as well as the management and gardening teams at Inverewe to create a unique experience.

Malcolm Innes, Director for the Art & Design Research Centre at Edinburgh Napier University said: “The garden is a cornucopia of exotic and dramatic plants. The visual experience during the daytime is a wall of lush vegetation and it can be difficult to appreciate individual plants. At night, careful application of small amounts of light gives us the chance to reveal these plants in a way that’s

impossible during the day.

“The aim of the project is to inspire visitors to look more closely at the fantastic range and diversity of foliage, flowers, colours, shapes and sizes of plants within the garden.”

Douglas Allan, Visitor Services Manager at Inverewe Garden added, “We are delighted to be collaborating for a second year with Napier University to create an even more spectacular ‘Inverewe Illuminated’ light show at our award winning heritage garden.”

“Visitors will have chance to experience this Highland lochside paradise in a totally different way when its pathways, plants, trees and buildings are transformed into an amazing ‘underwater’ experience using lights, colour and sound. Added to the visual experiences, our team will be on hand

to add warming and welcoming refreshments into the mix, for a truly memorable visit.”

Shows begin at 5pm and run until 8pm.Usual garden admission prices will apply. For more information, please visit https://www.nts.org.uk/visit/events/inverewe-illuminated.

Inverewe Garden is a corner of paradise perched on the edge of the West Highlands. The garden has been cultivated with care and is brimming with rare species from the across the globe, thanks to the effects of the Gulf Stream.

Visitors can enjoy the impressive variety of plants, go wildlife spotting and discover the stories of the father and daughter who created the garden in Inverewe House.

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