As the weather warms up there is a host of outdoor activities to look forward to at Dorset’s Knoll Gardens this summer.
The season begins with a special day in celebration of National Volunteers Week. On 3 June anyone who volunteers in any capacity can visit the garden free-of-charge. All you have to do is show some proof of your volunteering status on arrival.
Then, on 11 June there’s another free admission day, this time for local wildlife enthusiasts. Knoll works closely with the Dorset Wildlife Trust (DWT) to make the garden wildlife friendly and has designated 11 June as DWT Members’ Day when all DWT members can visit free-of-charge. Garden admission will also be free for anyone joining Dorset Wildlife Trust on the day.
A local potter and garden sculptor with an international reputation can be found at Knoll on 18 June. Jonathan Garratt brings his expertise and his humour to a talk on container gardening with a twist from 11am – 12.30pm. Jonathan’s work has featured at the V&A, the Scottish Gallery, the Chelsea Fringe and London’s Garden Museum and this will be rare opportunity to find out more about his unique take on garden sculpture and buy one of his stunning pots.
Three specialist events feature in Knoll’s July programme. A plant medicine walk and workshop brings medical herbalist Rachel Heathcote back to Knoll following a sell-out event last year. Following a gentle walk to discover what’s in Knoll’s natural medicine chest you will prepare your own herbal medicines and receive samples to take home. The Plant Medicine Walk and Workshop takes place on 2 July, from 10.30am – 1pm.
Later that month there’s a fern day with specialist grower Country Garden Plant Sales on 23 July from 10am – 2pm, and a guided butterfly walk from 11am – 12.30pm on 30 July.
Two family events take place in August. You can help DWT volunteers identify the wildlife found in Knoll Gardens on 2 August from 10am – 3pm. No experience is required and families are welcome. Herbalist Rachel Heathcote then returns to Knoll on 13 August for a children’s workshop. Running from 10.30am – 12 noon there’ll be an opportunity to enjoy some herbal art as well as make simple and safe lotions and potions.
Knoll Gardens and its award-winning nursery opens Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm. Planted with thousands of grasses and flowering perennials the gardens are also home to an impressive collection of rare and unusual trees and shrubs. You can enjoy Knoll simply as a place of rest and relaxation, or dig a little deeper and discover a working example of a beautiful year-round garden, providing a flourishing environment for plants and a welcoming habitat for wildlife.
For more information and details of Knoll’s full event programme go to www.knollgardens.co.uk or call 01202 873931.