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Norfolk gardens in the National Garden Scheme in 2024

Lexham Hall. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk
Lexham Hall. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk

From country estates to cottage gardens, a community garden, a hospice garden, evening openings and guided tours, a diverse selection of more than 70 glorious gardens, most of which are not normally on show to the public, will open during a period of eight months for the Norfolk National Garden Scheme in 2024.

Last year a record number of visitors raised an amazing £155,000 for the many health and nursing charities that the scheme supports.

Great British Life: Old Hall Farmhouse. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme NorfolkOld Hall Farmhouse. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk (Image: Simon Smith)

The garden visiting year begins in February, with the ever-popular snowdrop festival - and who doesn’t enjoy a walk through a carpet of snowdrops? Six gardens will be opening for the festival, three of which are woodland walks. There will be a special guided tour at Raveningham Hall, and you will find over a hundred varieties of Galanthus at Chestnut Farm. Old Hall Farmhouse, which belongs to a snowdrop enthusiast, will be opening for the scheme for the first time.

Moving into March and April, the spring bulbs begin to bring some most welcome colour into the gardens, followed in May by riotous rhododendrons and azaleas which feature in some of our larger gardens.

Great British Life: Wensum Farmhouse. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme NorfolkWensum Farmhouse. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk

June is the busiest month, with a medley of gardens filled with the joy and scents of summer: evening guided tours of peony fields, an evening opening in the garden of a famous designer, and three new gardens opening near East Rudham, are just a few examples.

In July, gardening enthusiasts can take a guided tour of the Walled Garden, Little Plumstead, visit two new gardens opening in the rural village of Tittleshall, or admire an interesting group of small town gardens in Norwich. Or perhaps you might be tempted by a collection of four gardens in the historic village of Castle Acre.

Great British Life: Charnwood, Brundall. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme NorfolkCharnwood, Brundall. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk

During August the gardens continue to flourish, with a masterclass of grasses and late planting at Severals Grange, a new garden called Charnwood at Brundall, and the quirky Fiddian’s Folly.

September sees the walled garden at Holkham Hall return to the scheme with an exclusive evening opening, plus, in the south of the county, Vicarage House, a new garden, will welcome visitors over two days.

Great British Life: Vicarage House, Great Hockham. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme NorfolkVicarage House, Great Hockham. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk

October brings autumnal colours, which you can enjoy at the extensive gardens at East Ruston as well as another new garden at East Carleton Manor.

All these gardens are featured in our popular county booklet which will be available in garden centres, nurseries and horticultural outlets from February.

Juliet Collier, who compiles the booklet, says: 'Visitors see the little yellow booklet as a ray of sunshine, the herald of spring, when they can peruse and plan which gardens to visit throughout the coming season.'

Great British Life: Hindringham Hall. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme NorfolkHindringham Hall. Photo: contributed by National Garden Scheme Norfolk

Along with the standard open days, many of the gardens also open by arrangement, which means you can take a group, whether they be friends, colleagues or clubs, and book directly with the garden owner.

Details of gardens can be found in the booklet and some gardens require pre-booked tickets available from the website. It is advisable to check for up to date details on ngs.org.uk to find your perfect garden.



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