After leaving Edinburgh, we called at Dalkeith, the noble seat of the Duke of Buccleuch. It was here that M'Intosh, author of the 'Book of the Garden' and other works, was once gardener. The same position is now held by Mr Thomson. We will say en passant, that to be able to obtain and keep such a situation as the Duke's gardener at Dalkeith, is a great honour. We have no similar position for men in this country. The nearest approach might be that of superintendent of a park, large cemetery, or the like. The flower-garden attached to Mr Thomson's dwelling would be something to talk of here, let alone that of his employer.

The gardens noted at Dalkeith are some distance from the palace, and are part of the fruit gardens of the same. Except for noble park-like expanse, and shrubs, the palace has no particular dressed scenery, the flowers being, as we said before, in and around the fruit-garden - greenhouses, fruit-houses, etc. These houses, if we mistake not, were designed and built while M'Intosh was gardener here, and the ' Book of the Garden ' contains plans and designs as then executed, given at the time as the most perfect samples of glass structures for the purpose then extant.

The present manager has sent out many new Grapes of great merit, but White Lady Dovvnes, a very fine late-keeping variety, is yet to come out, and is considered equal in every respect to the well-known Black, with the additional advantage of being of needed colour. His Golden Champion Grape had bunches full 5 pounds. In one house we noticed Vines with first-class fruit on year-old Vines. Here were some houses long since cleared of fruit, the Vines soon ready to be pruned and started for next year's crop; some were then "just right for the tooth," Dome with 10 pound bunches, while others were as late as it is possible to have them. The idea is to have the late keepers hang on until the first early crop is ready. Pine-apples are here grown in very large quantities - some 800 plants in all: everything is in the most perfect order, and in quality the plants hard to beat. Many houses devoted to flowers were a sight to see; one at the time of our visit had nothing but Calceolarias in it, had been in flower eight weeks, but was still a bank of blossoms. Another house had mostly Geraniums, of the Zonal class, including many double ones, and certainly for dazzling effect it was extremely rich. Each plant was perfect in itself; none very large, while the whole was one bank of blazing colours.

Very conspicuous was a variety called Le Grand, with trusses 5 or 6 inches across. Madame Lemoine, a double flower of the colour of Christine, was very beautiful; while another called Perilla had a zone or horse-shoe marking, very fine and distinct. The Duke of Edinburgh was one of the finest of the bronze section, and showed off to advantage, having very novel coloured foliage. Very conspicuous in this house, scattered here and there, were specimens of a plant new to us - the Statice profusa, with pleasing light-blue flowers. It is much thought of here, and said to be one of the best of things to force into flower at all seasons.

It is impossible within our limits to mention a tithe of the houses or their contents, so will just run over a few things that struck us favourably in our passage through them. Among Orchids, several charming Vandas were in flower, particularly a huge V. teres, and another of V. cerulea. Mr Thomson was using largely a new system of growing Orchids on sandstone with a very happy effect. Near by stood a fine Suava in fruit, said to be of delicious flavour. A new Maiden-Hair Fern called Adiantum Farleyana is a very fine thing, having the appearance of a miniature Ghingo tree. A fine Lomaria bella, also Sibotia spectabillis; some very good Ericas, particularly E. retorta major, Jacksonii, Marnockii, and Florida nicely in flower: a Savillia major, 4 feet through, an Alonea superba with delicate white flowers; very fine.

We had long desired to see some of the examples of the bedding-out process we so often read of as practised in Britain now, and had the opportunity here for the first time. And certainly it deserves all that has been said of it. The masses of bloom here to be met with, arranged with the precision almost of a picture, chains formed of plants, kept as distinct to the line as a well-trimmed box edging, of all and various heights to suit the grouping, with colours to match and harmonise on philosophic principles, or the fancy of the designer; every plant in its place, neither too high nor too low; walks between some with the nicest-looking gravel, with other beds set in the verdant green of the lawn, certainly formed a picture we shall not soon forget. Upwards of 70,000 plants are used to create this effect. Many at putting out are of goodly size. There were whole carpets of blue, formed by very fine varieties of the Lobelia studded with specimen objects of colour, looking at a little distance like a blue lawn, with carefully-arranged groups of flowers methodically planted within it. This was an entirely new idea to us, yet nothing could be more striking.

The compact, creeping nature of the Lobelia, makes it a good plant for such a purpose, and now that they have various shades of blue, white and even a dull red, quite a novel feature can be carried out by having a groundwork of the desired colour, with groups to represent flower-beds in any pattern wished, planted, as it were, in this floral lawn. No attempt of this sort can be made except where planting is done on a large scale, and where the situation is favourable to do so. But the idea there seems to be to find out new ways to do their planting, particularly portions of it, so that some novel or striking feature may be brought out each year.

The very great variety of plants the English gardeners make available for the purposes of bedding is not the least remarkable feature of the subject. We doubt whether there is a plant with any pretensions to continuous flowering, or conspicuous foliage, that has not, at one time or another, been tried as a bedding-plant. By this we do not mean here and there one turned out into the flower-border in a haphazard kind of way, but in regular grouping, either as a single colour, a line, or figure. As we propose to take up this bedding question a little more thoroughly hereafter, we will for the present leave out some specimens of grouping of which we took notice at the time.