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Light frequently breaks through the thick foliage, illuminating a hauntingly beautiful expanse populated by some of the most majestic trees in the policies. Greenwalks weave around these colossal conifers, themselves fetched from some of the farthest corners of the world over 100 years ago.
Particularly popular in the 19th century, Conifers were a special preference of the 3rd Marquess, who planted the original Victorian Pinetum at Mount Stuart. Although we are now used to the sight of a diverse range of conifers in this country, it should be remembered that there are only three native species, rendering the trees originally planted here rare curiosities just a century ago.
Planting of the new Pinetum began in 1990 under the guiding hand of the 6th Marquess, whose considerable contribution to the conservation of these rare species must not be overlooked. Mount Stuart joined forces with The Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh to set up the first 'network' garden, within the International Conifer Conservation programme. This initiative was established to set up a 'seed bank' for endangered temperate conifers, threatened by logging and de-forestation. All of these trees have been put in their precarious position by the loss of habitat due to the ever expanding needs of mankind, and the Pinetums have become a veritable ark for their preservation.