Gardens are back

fullsizeoutput_3dcMerlin Road

Judith McCann of the Aldersbrook Horticultural Society introduces the group’s second annual open garden event, with 17 creative spaces to explore across the Aldersbrook and Lakehouse Estates

On Sunday 11 July, Aldersbrook Horticultural Society will be holding its second open gardens. The event – postponed from last year – will see 17 gardens across the Aldersbrook and Lakehouse Estates open from 12 noon to 5pm.

We are excited to be extending the trail to the Lakehouse Estate and have three gardens opening on Belgrave Road, ranging from a small garden that has evolved naturally, to larger gardens with trees, shrubs, lawns, flower beds and a pond.

On Aldersbrook Estate there is a range of gardens opening, many for the first time. Neighbours Sonya and Ray in Wanstead Park Avenue are opening their gardens together; a testament to their friendship is the open access to each other’s garden through a gap in the fence. Both spaces are beautiful and individual, while linking well together.

In Westmorland Close (entrance via Arran Drive), you will find a small garden – designed by Gosia Rokicka and her friends from Permablitz London – created with dogs, wildlife and a good use of space in mind: it has fruit trees, climbers, herbs, a lawn, a frog and hedgehog area, bird box, bicycle racks, table, hammock, and even a foldable desk for the summer office. Come and see for yourself!

Old favourites from our first garden trail include the pop-up pizza restaurant. “We are looking forward to welcoming you again to Aldersbrook’s own pop-up, open-air pizza restaurant serving simple but delicious homemade pizzas from the wood-burning oven in our garden, with all proceeds going to the day’s charities. Pizza eating is not compulsory; you are welcome to come and enjoy the curves, texture, sound and scent of our garden, and to see what has been done to this typical terraced house plot,” said Carolyn Jones of Empress Avenue.

Sunderland Community Garden at the end of Empress Avenue has evolved enormously over the past year and is always worth a visit. This communal allotment provides a social space for local residents to meet, share knowledge and grow plants. Individuals use the space at their own leisure but the group meet twice a week (Wednesday from 6pm to 8pm and Sunday from 12 noon to 2pm) to grow things together. If you’d like to get involved, come and join us.

Many of the open gardens will also be selling refreshments and plants, and all money raised will go to charity: Cancer Research, CHAOS (an East End charity that sends local children on holiday), Allotments for the Homeless and Seeds for Rwanda.

Gardens will open from 12 noon to 5pm on 11 July. Tickets: £5 (accompanied children free; single ticket for all gardens; buy tickets on the day from the first garden). For a list of gardens, visit wnstd.com/ahs