Designed landscapes in Scotland are set to have legal protection like listed buildings under new plans.
Scottish Executive ministers have put forward proposals that would safeguard landscaped and historic gardens after years spent identifying important sites.
Historic Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage researched landscapes of national importance since 1980 to produce the Inventory of Gardens and Designed Landscapes, which lists 346 sites.
But after threats to their survival through development, efforts are being concentrated to safeguard grounds laid out for artistic effect.
Until now, there has been no statutory duty for their protection.
Historic Scotland put together the consultation documents saying it would constantly update and review designed landscapes for inclusion in the inventory.
Scottish minister for tourism, culture and sport Patricia Ferguson said: “Scotland is particularly lucky, with a wealth of beautiful designed landscapes, ancient monuments and incredible architecture.
“These documents give us the opportunity to review how Scotland’s legacy is best protected.”
The consultation is due to finish on 23 June.
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