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Thursday, 29 June 2017

Twelve London gardens to delight and inspire

Last weekend saw the Open Gardens Day for our NW2 neighbourhood. Twelve gardens opened to the public – all very different, but equally entrancing, and a tribute to their owners who nurture them with such care and attention (above: Maggie and Peter's garden with terrace, lawn and pond; below  Heidi and Gavin's family garden, where plants are grown mostly from cuttings.)
It was very much a community affair, with plenty of opportunities for catching up with neighbours and making new friends. Several hundred people stopped off for refreshments in the tea garden, went up the tower of St Gabriel’s for a birds-eye view, and bought plants grown for the occasion by members of the garden club. 
They discovered Alvio's garden (above), that he has transformed over the years from a jungle of ash and sycamore trees to a colourful oasis.
They saw how Kate and Simon's relatively small plot manages to include 8 varieties of trees, a rose garden, woodland walk and stream.
Andrew has rejevenated this family garden with a palette of cooler whites, greens and blues. (Loved the way buckets were used for lavender planting.)
An unusual sight at the end of Rosie and David's garden: a tranquil woodland glade.
Hester's garden is on three levels with a large box parterre and a pergola of reclaimed wrought-iron railings.
Alio and Dominic's family garden has three main areas providing entertainment and relaxation for adults, children and a large dog.
Elayne and Jim's garden, brimming over with plants, has a wildlife pond, pergolas with clematis and roses and a collection of acers.
Belinda's surprisingly large garden has four ponds, self-seeding plants, fruit trees, roses and hydrangeas.
Deborah and George's immaculate lawn is surrounded by colourful borders and mature trees.
The Dell, NW London's best-kept secret, was also on show. It's a park hidden behind a a row of houses and at this time of year is awash with roses.
The money raised through ticket and plant sales will go to local charities, while some children collected £50 for the Grenfell Tower victims by selling home-made lemonade from their front garden. The event is organised every two years by the garden club, part of the Mapesbury Residents’ Association, and some 80 people were involved in the planning and preparation. Grateful thanks to everyone for such a memorable afternoon.

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