Logan Botanic Garden Seaside Wildflower Exhibition

We all enjoy a summer beach trip but plants need to be tough to thrive year round in a harsh seaside environment, a new exhibition explains how delicate looking beach flowers are among nature’s ultimate survivors.

In collaboration with Rhins of Galloway Coast Path Project, Logan Botanic Garden, near Port Logan, in Dumfries & Galloway, is hosting the Wildflowers of Sand and Shingle Beaches exhibition running from mid-August through to the end of September 2022.

Alongside the Garden’s wonderful palm trees, tree ferns and giant gunnera, visitors can discover more about the beautiful flora that grows where the land meets the sea, where demanding conditions mean many plants have adapted to thrive.

Plants growing on beaches must withstand the inhospitable conditions of shifting sand and shingle, salty sea spray and drying winds but also benefit from not having to compete with more vigorous plants. With a tolerance of salt spray, a lack of nutrients and periods of drought they live on the coast where less robust plants would struggle to survive. Many of the flowers have specialised by having fleshy or hairy leaves to combat arid conditions and roots that penetrate deep below the surface in search of moisture. Seaside plants often have other strategies for survival and have buoyant seeds that can be dispersed along the shore by tides and currents.

Peter Ross, Chair of the Rhins of Galloway Coast Path Steering Group, commented “Access improvements mean it is easier to explore the Rhins of Galloway Coast to discover stunning wildflowers. We are absolutely delighted that Logan Botanic Garden is hosting this exhibition and would encourage visitors to spend some time at the display – it will make their next visit to a beach on the Rhins Coast even more enjoyable!”

To accompany the exhibition, a guide to common beach flowers has been published helping visitors to know their sea rocket from their biting stonecrop. The Rhins of Galloway Coast Path is a project managed by Dumfries and Galloway Council and supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Coastal Communities Fund.

Plans are in place to run events revealing the amazing wildlife on the Rhins coast, which will be updated on their Facebook page @Rhinsofgallowaycoastpath. The guide can be downloaded from the Rhins of Galloway Coast path website.

Reflecting on the importance and value of wildflowers, Richard Baines, Curator at Logan Botanic Garden said, “In terms of biodiversity, they are an intrinsic part of the food chain for surrounding insects and animals. Their root systems also help PUBLIC


stabilize their home soil which helps prevent erosion- a particularly useful factor for the wildflowers based at a coastal location such as The Rhins of Galloway Coast.

“The exhibition at Logan highlights the diversity of native flora found in these coastal habitats in Galloway and the photographic display highlights some of the main species that are found on the newly designated Rhins coastal walk.”

He concluded: “The newly produced wildflower booklet is an excellent educational tool to aid identification of any unknown species. The exhibition also ties in with the native plant area located in the walled garden at Logan which also provides information on the local species.”

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