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Johnston Terrace Wildlife Reserve

A walled wildlife garden in the centre of Edinburgh.

There is a variety of habitat types including a birch copse, a wildflower meadow, a pond, a hedgerow and a woodland edge habitat. There is also a patio with herb borders, brush piles to provide homes for wildlife and a compost heap.

Although the individual habitat types cover small areas, together they provide an area for many different plant species, a large number of frogs, several species of breeding birds and hundreds of insects. Many songbirds including robins, blackbirds, blue and great tits, chaffinches, and greenfinches use the garden for a food source and habitat, and predators such as sparrowhawks visit Johnston Terrace for hunting. A wide range of wildflowers including cowslips, poppies, teasel, bluebells and cranesbill were planted to increase diversity in the wildflower meadow and woodland edge. These are now well established well and provide food for both birds and insects.

Best time to visit:
June-Sept: Wildflowers.

Getting there:
The reserve is situated in the heart of Edinburgh's Old Town, 50m below the Castle esplanade, which offers a top-down view of the garden. More precisely, the garden lies to the south of Johnstone Terrace adjacent to 25 Johnstone Terrace in the west and the Patrick Geddes steps in the east.

Via a locked gate situated off the Patrick Geddes Steps, on the eastern edge of the reserve.

OS map: 66 NT254735

More pictures from the secret garden on Johnston Terrace

Bawsinch & Duddingston Loch