Banks & Streams
Previous custodians at Kirklands had horses, it was on Louisa’s birthday and Christmas list for many years. Initially Peter strimmed the paddock. Some years the hogweed and the nettles would be 10 feet tall, but gradually the field was cultivated. The cardboard and mulch system was used, then trees planted like the white bark birch trees (Betula betula jacquemontii snow queen), a collection of sorbus with different colour berries and a corkscrew hazel. Then slowly filled in with shrubs and rhododendrons. Underneath the smaller plants were added; snowdrops in spring, hellebores, erythronium, and a myriad of other things to spread the season. In autumn, the Sorbus berries shine out and the peeling bark of the Chinese Birch.
From the end of the Bluebell Walk, you can either continue up the bank or take the right path down over the blue bridge where you can either walk up onto the woodland path along the far side of the stream through naturally regenerating ancient woodland or across the red bridge to the bog garden.
The red bridge was replaced in the winter of 2019 as it could be assembled in the garage out of the cold. It was very much a team effort with Louisa, her husband Tony, and the grandchildren, Jacob and Cameron building the bridge and then carrying it down into place. The blue bridge is from May 2021
Next to the red bridge is the area in front of an old well; the archaeologist tells us it’s a Victorian folly, but we prefer the story heard when first here that it was an ancient well for village people to draw water.
This area was a mass of nettles and scrub willow. A retired miner, Benny McLaughlin helped dig out some of the roots. Peter and he thoroughly enjoyed sitting down by the stream/burn and resolving the problems of the world and listen to the stream. When Benny died in 1991, Peter built the raised area by the stream and some of the raised beds, where he and Gill could sit and contemplate the peace and quiet of Saline burn.