What better combination is there than visiting a lovely garden and enjoying tea and cake, knowing that you are supporting a good cause? Of course I am talking about the wonderful summer institution of ‘gardens open for charity’, whether these are via the National Gardens Scheme in the UK (aka The Yellow Book) or individual and village openings, often for a local charity. You probably know that I am a great fan of garden visiting but there is something very generous about a householder inviting all and sundry into their own private garden. These are not show gardens, they are spaces created by the effort of individuals for the enjoyment of family and friends. How wonderful that they invite us all to share for an afternoon.
Garden Safaris where anything from 6 to 10 or more gardens are open together are one of
the best ways to spend a summer afternoon. Not only can you see the variety of styles that can be realised in gardens with similar soil and situation but there is usually organised parking at a location convenient for several (if not all) of the gardens. And sometimes the local W.I. are drafted in to provide refreshments – of course since the aim is to support a good cause then it seems churlish to refuse a tea time treat.
For anyone in Kent or Medway looking for a ‘good cause garden’ to visit this summer: I run a garden therapy group for ellenor Hospice and a number of generous gardening supporters open their gardens. Details and dates can be found at www.ellenor.org/gloriousgardens
Happy Gardening, Alison
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