Magnolia campellii 'Charles Raffill'

Scotland’s National Horticultural & Gardening Society

The Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society has a long and impressive history. Established in 1809 by a group of seventeen Edinburgh worthies for ‘the encouragement and improvement of the best fruit, the most choice flowers and the most useful culinary vegetables‘, the Society has continued to promote all aspects of Scottish horticulture. Current members of the Society, many of whom are experts in their field, share a common interest in gardening and horticulture.

As a registered Scottish Charity, the Society seeks to promote, encourage and support a wide range of horticultural and gardening interests, including a range of educational projects.

Whilst we cherish our history, the Society strives to maintain a modern outlook, helping to promote horticulture to the next generation of gardeners and horticulturists.

Get involved!


Coronavirus (Covid-19) updates

Coronavirus is presenting us with unprecedented challenges, challenges which the Caley is taking very seriously.  We are keeping up to date with Scottish Government advice but as you will all know, things change on an almost daily basis.

Caley Visits and Trips

At the moment we have cancelled all of our planned trips and visits up to July 2020.  We are hopeful that our remaining trips may be able to go ahead as planned but this is subject to the restrictions that are in place at the moment being lifted. We are monitoring the situation and will keep you advised.  Please ensure you give us your email contact details so we can be in touch should any changes be needed.

Please follow the current advice- stay at home and stay safe.

View across the pond
Cowden Castle Japanese Garden

Caley Recommendations

Looking for gardens to visit? The nurseries recommended by the Members of the Society? Or the plants recommended for Scottish gardens? Visit The Caley Recommendations page by clicking the button below!

Saughton Park Bandstand

Saughton Park

Unfortunately, the Walled Garden at Saughton Park is closed to the public due to the Covid-19 restrictions.  The wider park environs are open for people to enjoy during their periods of exercise.

The Caley now has a new home within Saughton Park in Edinburgh.  We have an office and maintain a number of areas within the walled garden.  We also have a teaching area and demonstration beds that feature ideas that you can transfer to your own garden.  We offer a range of classes and workshops, both for the beginner and the more experienced gardener.

We are hoping to build a glasshouse within our teaching area and fundraising is well underway to raise money for this.  If you would like to help, please click on the button below to go to the Saughton Park page of the website where you can find out more.


Gardening with Children

Gardening is a great way to get children outdoors and to develop an interest in nature and the environment. Growing and picking their own fruit and veg is a great way to encourage children to eat more of them. If you have the space in your garden, why not give them a small patch of their own to look after?  Even if you only have a windowbox, you can still encourage children to grow and look after some herbs or salad crops.

For more advice on gardening with children and some fun activities, click below to go to our Gardening with Children page.


Grow & Learn

Just to let you know that we are still here and working through this period of Covid-19 restrictions.  If you have a query related to Grow & Learn, please contact Jean Gavin, our Grow& Learn Development Officer and she will do her best to help you out.  Her contact details are: email –; mobile – 07397 167458.

Grow & Learn person-centred award, recognising individual progress and achievement in horticulture.  Our awards are inclusive, individualised and offer life skills based education for all.

Grow and Learn aims to address a large gap in provision in the world of horticulture by offering an alternative learning opportunity for those who find mainstream learning challenging.

A trip to the Water of Leith

Grow & Learn in Nature (GLiN)

Unfortunately, GLiN is on hold at the moment until Covid-19 restrictions are lifted and schools are up and running again.  In the meantime, if you have a query about GLiN, please contact our Grow & Learn Development Officer, Jean Gavin, and she will do her best to help you out.  Her contact details are: email –; mobile – 07397 167458.

With thanks to our funders Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) (Outdoor Learning in Nature), since April 2019 we’ve been delivering outdoor learning to 5 participating local schools. Weekly sessions see a total of 48 pupil’s 12 teachers/classroom assistants gain practical horticultural skills and active participation in nature-based learning.

Learning at Saughton Park enables our pupils to connect with various park groups, visitors and events at the park as well as contributing to greenspace improvements at the park.

Rhododendron 'Widgeon'

Plants in Season

There is always a plant of interest to look out for in Scotland.  Whether it be for its flowers, fruits, foliage or interesting shape, there is a plant for every season.

Keep checking back to see what you should be looking out for at any given time of the year, both in your garden and in the wider environment.


Virtual Spring Bulb Show

As we had to cancel both our main Spring Bulb Show and the Junior Groups Competition and Show, we decided to hold a virtual show instead.

All of the entries can be viewed on our Virtual Spring Show page.