The small port of Gairloch on the western coast of the mainland gives access to Inverewe Gardens, possibly the most famous, certainly the most beautiful, demonstration of the moderating effects of the warm Gulf Stream on the climate of the west coast of Scotland. Although on roughly the same latitude as Hudson Bay in Canada, the gardens are noted for their many subtropical plants. Osgood Mackenzie began the creation of the gardens on what was then a barren rocky peninsula overlooking Loch Ewe in 1865. Today, visitors come to see the many species of rhododendrons, the Chinese and Himalayan camelias, the giant tree ferns, and the many rare flowers from the southern hemisphere.
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