A Perfect Day at The Garden of Cosmic Speculation

While celebrating Jennifer’s mom’s 80th birthday in Scotland in November 2023 – the entire family: Jen, her sister, her daughter, mother, and niece toured the amazing Garden of Cosmic Speculation on a bright and sunny day.

clouds reflected in a lake at the Garden of Cosmic Speculation

Near Dumfries, Scotland, the 30 acre garden is the now 35 year old brainchild of Maggie Keswick and Charles Jencks. The garden celebrates nature – as most gardens do – but in an unexpected way as Maggie and Charles strove to bring to life themes of contemporary philosophy and science. The garden was Alice In Wonderland come to life – with formal gardens full of undulating walls, stair stepped hedges, and crisscrossed paths, mazes set in a birch tree forest, and of course – the famous and often photographed sculptural topography.  

a concrete lip at the garden of cosmic speculation

Since Jen studied this garden in school, she knew some of what to expect, but climbing the meticulously sculpted enormous stepped mounds – full of numerous paths set at different slopes and angles – and experiencing the changing light and views of the ponds below and forest beyond was truly inspiring. Even her 12 year old daughter and 17 year old niece were entranced. Her favorite part was the twisted planes planted with stripes of plants and graded into the front yard of the proper Georgian Family House.

twisted planes planted with stripes of plants at the garden of cosmic speculation

After, they got to have tea with the gardeners and discussed what it was like to take care of such a huge and ever changing work of art. What an absolute treat!

a grove of trees and a labyrinth at the garden of cosmic speculation