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Open gardens in Suffolk and south Norfolk

A picture of last year's open gardens in Bressingham. Picture by Mark Bullimore Photography.
A picture of last year's open gardens in Bressingham. Picture by Mark Bullimore Photography.

More than 100 stunning gardens are about to open across Suffolk and south Norfolk for visitors to admire and enjoy.

Expect to discover hidden gems and see a variety of flowers and trees.

Burgate, July 6-7

The Burgate Flower Festival, themed Book Titles, and open gardens will take place on July 6 and 7 from 11am to 5pm.

Maps will be available from the church.

For further details contact Jennie Labdon on 01379 783598.

Botesdale and Rickinghall, June 2

Residents of Botesdale and Rickinghall are raising money for British Red Cross by taking part in its Open Gardens season on Sunday.

At least 20 residents across both villages will be opening their garden gates and inviting you to have a look round.

The event, running from 10.30am until 5pm, is a fantastic opportunity for plant and flower enthusiasts to enjoy a range of gardens, meet new people and see a wide variety plants, flowers and trees. Tickets can be purchased at Botesdale Village Hall.

Entrance is £5 for adults and children under 18 can enter for free. All entrance money will go to the charity. Home-made teas and lunches will also be available.

For more information on British Red Cross or the Open Gardens in Suffolk, visit www.redcross.org.uk. Alternatively, contact Senior Community Fundraiser Paul Fleet on 01603 253 412 or pfleet@redcross.org.uk.

The vintage bus Patrick Burnside will be driving in Eye.
The vintage bus Patrick Burnside will be driving in Eye.

Eye, June 8-9

Gardens will be open for the 40th year in succession in Eye next weekend.

When the event was launched by Lady Flaxman in 1979 to raise funds for the Church of St Peter and St Paul, 13 gardeners took part.

Next Saturday and Sunday, 31 gardens will be open as well as the town hall, where there will be gardening, antiques and bric-a-brac stalls, alongside a tombola and refreshments.

Refreshments will also be on sale at two of the open gardens.

“Equally as important as raising funds for our church, the event showcases the town of Eye, bringing together local businesses, garden owners, garden lovers and all our local residents,” said organiser Christine Bird.

“Visitors to the town of Eye are given a very warm welcome and a great time is had by all.

“A really fun addition will be the opportunity to take a free ride on a vintage bus and we have joined forces with the primary school to enable every pupil to make a mini scarecrow to celebrate our 40 years of open gardens.”

The scarecrows will be on display in the school hall on Saturday, June 8, from 12.30pm to 5.30pm. In the evening, musical comedy team Instant Sunshine will perform in the church.

Tickets – covering entry for both days – cost £5 and can be bought from the town hall over the course of the weekend. More details at www.eyeopengardens.co.uk.

Harleston open gardens two years ago.
Harleston open gardens two years ago.

Harleston, June 1-2

This weekend’s Harleston Open Gardens will take visitors through the garden gate and into some of the town’s surprising and unexpected spaces.

What one sees from the street more often than not gives little clue to what lies behind.

Now in its third year, the event will feature more than 20 gardens, large and small, and in all their variety, across Saturday and Sunday.

Some of them, like Cloudsview off Shotford Road, and the walled garden at Millhouse Pottery, have been established over many years.

Others show how new plots little more than two years old are being transformed to create new garden landscapes on private developments on the outskirts of town.

Some gardens are astonishingly large, some are engagingly small – one of the smaller ones had to ask visitors to queue for entry the last time it opened.

Visitors will find ponds and pergolas, flower filled borders and ferns, insect-friendly gardens and chickens, fruit and veg, summerhouses and greenhouses, sun-filled and shaded lawns.

Some of the garden hosts will be selling refreshments to benefit their chosen charities.

Harleston’s public houses and some of the town’s cafés will be open and St John’s Church will host a coffee morning on the Sunday.

An extra treat on Sunday will be the presence of a vintage bus, which will take passengers to gardens on the edge of town.

Departures will be from Broad Street bus stop, where a timetable will be displayed.

Entry for the weekend is £3 per adult or £5 for a family group (two adults plus children).

Tickets are available in advance from the Card and Party Shop in Market Place. On June 2 there will be a ticket sale stall at the Apiary café in The Thoroughfare.

A trail map has advice about wheelchair access, and whether a garden is open on both days or one only. It runs from 11am to 4pm.

Mulbarton, July 7

Mulbarton Open Gardens take place on Sunday, July 7 from 10am to 4pm.

The event is organised by the Mulbarton Allotment and Leisure Gardeners' Association in an effort to raise money for the Big C and Alzheimer's Society East Anglia.

Tickets are £5 which can be bought at Harvest House, NR14 8JS. Under-14s go for free.

Pulham St Mary, June 8-9

Walk, bike or drive to explore 14 beautiful gardens in Pulham St Mary.

There is lots to see, including climbing wisteria, miniature railway, wildlife ponds, tree plantations, meadows, and all kinds of unusual plants.

Gardens will open in Pulham St Mary in three different walks: centre, north and south of the village.

There is only one main walk in the centre of the village and the other gardens are on the perimeter of Pulham St. Mary which is more suited to cycling or taking the car as it about 1.5 miles.

Photographs in St. Mary's Church and the Pennoyer Centre.

Light lunches, teas, coffees, cakes available on both days at the Pennoyer Centre.

Entry is £5, and free for children.

All proceeds are divided equally between St Mary's church and the Pennoyer Centre.

Open Gardens Weekend with Photographic Exhibition takes place on June 8 to 9 June from 11am to 4pm.

Shelfanger, June 8-9

Shelfanger villagers are opening up their magnificent gardens to the public for a whole weekend.

The starting point will be at Shelfanger Village Hall for entry at 11am where maps will be provided along with refreshments, free parking and a plant sale.

Shelfanger village is hosting an Open Gardens weekend to raise money for their village church.

The Shelfanger Open Gardens and Wheelbarrow Show takes place from June 8 to 9 from 11am to 4.30pm.

Entry is £5 and free for children.

The 70+ open gardens allow visitors to see a wide range of flowers.
The 70+ open gardens allow visitors to see a wide range of flowers.

Wickham Skeith, June 16

Open Gardens: Village gardens will be open in Wickham Skeith on Sunday, June 16, from 1pm until 6pm, in aid of St Andrew’s Church amenity project.

Maps to show the open gardens will be on sale at the village hall where the car parking and toilets are located.

Tickets are £5 per adult with children free, but please, no dogs.

Lunches and teas will be also be available as well as plants, seedlings and crafts on sale.

Wingfield, June 15-16

The Great Garden Trail in Wingfield takes place on June 15 to 16 from 11am to 4pm.

Come and visit this picturesque and historic village with 18 gardens on display plus an art exhibition, craft stalls , plant sales, Romany Wagons and delicious food at various locations.

Raising funds for St St Elizabeth's Hospice and St Andrews Church.

Tickets are £4 for adults and free for children.

Wortham, July 7

Batteley's Cottage, The Ling will be opening their garden as part of the National Garden Scheme on Sunday, July 7 from 11.30 to 5.30pm where home made teas and light refreshments will also be available.

Tickets are adults £5 with children free.

Wortwell, June 29-30

Between 10.30am and 5pm there will be lots of gardens open, including a nature trail around the lakes.

The cost is £5. Tickets can be purchased on the day from The Core (Wortwell Community Centre) and Willow Mere, 25 Low Road.

Refreshments and parking are available at The Core, Tunbeck Close.

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