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Open gardens you can visit in Dorset this year

PUBLISHED: 12:40 07 June 2018 | UPDATED: 12:40 07 June 2018

The glorious views from the garden at Horn Park near Beaminster

The glorious views from the garden at Horn Park near Beaminster


Many of Dorset’s towns and villages are opening their private gardens to the public this month to help raise money for local charities, church repairs and village halls

9 June

Leigh Open Gardens

This lovely village near Sherborne has 13 gardens open (1 -5pm), including four that are new for this year, expect to meet some feathered and furry garden residents too! Plants for sale.

Cost £5, all proceeds to local charity Future Roots.


9 – 10 June

Netherbury Open Gardens

From tranquil riverside to a riot of rambling roses, admire 10 glorious gardens in this pretty village tucked away in the Brit Valley that first opened its gardens to visitors back in 1963. Included in the mix are legendary NGS venues - The Mill House, Hatchlands and Slape Manor. Homemade lunches in village hall, teas served in various gardens. Plant stalls. 1 – 5pm. Tickets £7 (valid for both days). Proceeds towards village church and local charities.


10 June

Blandford Forum’s Hidden Gardens

Around 20 gardens, from historic to modern, open their gates in this glorious Georgian town (11am -5pm). Plants on sale. Start at Marsh & Ham car park where you can buy ticket with map from Blandford Information Office. Tickets £5. Money raised goes to local charities.


16 June

Chedington Open Gardens & Studios

From cottage garden to Chedington Court there are 10 very different gardens to admire (11am – 5pm). Alongside local artists and makers are opening their studios, all in aid of their village hall where you will find homemade lunches and teas. Plant sale at Sandy Knapp opposite end of village to pub. Cost £5, all money raised goes to village hall fund.


16 – 17 June

Cerne Abbas Open Gardens

Explore 25 private gardens all within easy walking distance of the free car park from 2 – 6pm. Plant stall in village square. Teas in St Mary’s Church from 1.30pm. Tickets £7 for day £10 for weekend. Proceeds to Cerne Valley Scout Groups and Dorchester County Hospital Cancer Appeal. More details cerneopengardens.org.uk


23 June

Okeford Fitzpaine open gardens

Enjoy exploring a dozen gardens, some big, some small, and the allotments from 10am – 5pm. World War 1 Exhibition in St Andrew’s Church. Cream teas with home-made cakes and scones. Cost £5, proceeds towards village church.


23 – 24 June

Puddletown Open Gardens

Just east of Dorchester this village is opening the gates of around 12 gardens over two afternoons (1 – 6pm). Also tours of St. Mary’s Church tower subject to weather. Cream teas, cakes and preserves at the Village Hall where there is also a plant sale. Cost £5. All proceeds to St Mary’s Church fabric fund


24 June

Wimborne Minster Open Gardens Day

Gold medal winners in small town category (S and SE in Bloom 2017), throw open the gates of 18 fabulous local gardens of all shapes, sizes and designs (11am-5pm) in aid of Wimborne in Bloom. Start your visit from Wimborne Town Centre (car park in Allenview Road).Tickets £6.



24 June

Winterborne Kingston Open Gardens

Some 15 gardens (11am – 6pm) from the established to the newly created open their gates in this village near Blandford Forum Most are within easy walking distance of the car park and the Village Hall where there will be coffee, light lunches and teas along with plants for sale. Cost £5. Proceeds shared between St Nicholas Church and Winterborne Kingston Village Hall.


24 June

Roses for the RDA in Thorncombe

Glorious gardens in and around the beautiful village of Thorncombe near Chard open to raise funds for the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA). As well as admiring all the gardens in full bloom (2 – 5pm), there will be a chance to pet a pair of wonderful ponies, enjoy cream teas in the village hall and browse a plant stall. Event is organised by Chard & District RDA Group volunteers.


For full listings please visit opengardens.co.uk


Some 20 beautiful and varied Gardens of Cranborne open for visitors (11am – 5pm). Highlights of the many gardens opening include:

Cranborne Manor Gardens: Designed by John Tradescant in the early 17th century, the structure follows a pattern of ‘rooms’ delineated by hedges or walls and softened by billowing herbaceous borders. More at cranborne.co.uk.

Red Lion House: A delightful private garden, which is chemical-free and uses the principles of bio-dynamic horticulture. The herbaceous borders, rose, herb and vegetable gardens are designed to reflect the local environment. There are also a number of modern sculptures.

Manor View House: Wonderful late-Georgian house with beautiful walled garden, with a mass of repeat planting surrounding variegated standard hollies; deep borders are planted with a mixture of shrubs, perennials and roses.

The Old Vicarage: A mature garden with views to the church and Cranborne Manor. A natural swimming pond provides a habitat for wildlife.

Bank House: A typical Edwardian small walled garden with a vine, herbaceous plantings, roses, shrubs and climbing plants.

Alongside the open gardens local artists Helen Godfrey, Linda Rowe, Michelle Clements and Carla Taylor are holding an exhibition of their work and there will be a wide range of stalls and activities including maypole dancing all in aid of church funds. Weekend ticket £10.


Stable Court

Naturalistic-style garden with shrubbery and gravel garden; roses scrambling over hedges and walls, wild garden with pond. Close to house more formal garden with lawns and herbaceous borders. Exhibition of paintings in the studio. Homemade teas

Open: 10 June, 2 - 5.30pm

Where: Chalmington, Dorchester DT2 0HB

NGS Group Opening: Rampisham

Eight gardens from the large and well-established to smaller cottage gardens, some opening for the first time. Extensive colourful borders planted with shrubs, roses, unusual perennials and annuals. Walled vegetable garden, meadows and meandering pathways lead to bog gardens, wildlife ponds, garden sculptures and streams. 15th century village church, modified by Pugin in the 1840s, decorated with flowers. Homemade teas available in village hall.

Open: 10 June, 11am – 5pm

Where: DT2 0PR

The Old School House

Designer’s garden with interesting semi-tender plants close to house; lawns and garden divided into rooms including an orchard, secret garden and pergola walkway. Pleached hornbeam screen, beds mostly planted with roses and herbaceous plants. Teas.

Open: 17 & 20 June, 2 – 5pm

Where: The Street, Sutton Waldron, DT11 8NZ

Norwood House

Glorious purple, pink and white borders surround the house and lawn of this West Dorset garden. Many varieties of geranium, other perennials, grasses and shrubs. Lake walks weather permitting. Homemade teas.

Open: 17 & 21 June, 2-5pm

Where: Corscombe, Dorchester, DT2 0PD

Horn Park

Enjoy many rare and mature plants and shrubs in terraced, herbaceous, rock and water gardens, along with a woodland garden and a wildflower meadow. Homemade teas.

Open: 20 June, 2.30 - 4.30pm

Where: Tunnel Road, Beaminster DT8 3HB

For a full list of NGS venues or to download the NGS Garden Visits app go to ngs.org.uk.


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