Lady Kitty’s Garden
Lady Kitty’s garden was laid to grass until 2018, when Blooming Haddington instigated a project to add various species of lavender to the garden. Varieties planted are Angustifolia, Grosso, Hidcote and Rosea. In 2021 a Seringa Madame Lemoine was planted to complete the French theme of the area.
Lady Kitty’s Doocot and Lady Kitty’s Garden are named after Lady Catherine Charteris, who in the 18th century lived at Amisfield House to the east of Haddington but also owned this area.
In front of the Doocot is an area used to play petanque, and this is enjoyed by the Twinning Association when the town hosts visitors from our French twinned town Aubigny-sur-Nere.
This park is dominated by a Giant Redwood “Wellingtonia Gigantea” and the Ferguson Monument.
The ‘Wellingtonia Gigantea’ was planted on the 22nd June 1879 by Provost A M Main to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. There is also a plaque in the garden which commemorates the 50th anniversary of the D-Day Landings when the allied forces began the liberation of occupied France. The 3 Silver Birch trees were planted by East Lothian Council on 6th June 1994 at the same time as the plaque was erected.
To encourage better use of this park by the community Blooming Haddington worked in partnership with East Lothian Council to make improvements to the garden. New lighting was installed and the paths re-laid thanks to grants from the Haddington and Lammermuir Local Area Partnership. New benches have been added using funding from the Tesco blue token scheme and a family commemoration bench.
Heathers are planted at the base of the monument. Thousands of bulbs including daffodils, crocus and a bee friendly mix are planted in the grassed area.
In the autumn of 2017, new beds were created and planted with shade-loving plants, thanks to a grant from the Haddington Community Development Trust. Varieties include Heucherella ‘Dayglow Pink’, Brunnera macrophylla ‘Jack Frost’, Hosta ‘Frances Williams’, Persicaria amplexicaulis, Astilbe ‘Bressingham Beauty’ and Purpurlanze and Matteuccia struthiopteris.
The Monument is a memorial to Robert Ferguson, a radical member of parliament for Haddingtonshire from 1835 to 1837
On the railings around the Ferguson monument are thistle-shaped plaques. This tribute was organised by Haddington Community Council to commemorate each of the Haddington soldiers who died in World War One.
This small garden was restored by Blooming Haddington in 2015 with all materials and plants being donated by the community. A local carpenter made the attractive arched sign at the entrance. The bench in the garden was designed and donated by a local engineering company. The garden is regularly admired and enjoyed by the community and is increasingly used by the residents and staff of the nearby care home.
Over the last couple of years, as plants have matured, we have re-positioned and added new planting with an oriental theme, including hostas, azaleas, camelias, lilies and rhododendrons. The large lime trees on the south side are underplanted with hundreds of spring bulbs. Spring colour will give way to perennials including Brunnera ‘Jack Frost’, bronze grasses, Heuchera lime and Phlomis.
The north side of the garden includes a small pond and at the other end a Weeping Salix Tree. The island in the lade has been planted and includes a large Rheum. Wild aquatic plants colonise and naturalise the edge of the lade and are managed and controlled to assist wildlife to prosper. The area attracts wildlife and fish can be seen in the lade itself.
Baskets and Planters
Around the town centre are numerous street planters and potato boxes, which Blooming Haddington plant and maintain. The hanging baskets at commercial properties are sponsored by the resident businesses and are maintained by Blooming Haddington. In Court Street outside the Corn Exchange baskets are sponsored by members of the community.
Hardgate/Market Street Junction
On the North side of the junction of Market Street/Hardgate you will see Kinloch House, the pretty white house with gables, which dates from the 18th century. In front of Kinloch House there is a small green space. This has been improved by introducing a border which surrounds the grass area. The specimen Iris “Aubigny Auld Alliance” were cultivated by Richard Cayeux, a specialist grower of Iris. Lavender and Nepeta have also been planted to complement the Iris.