Visitors to Belper Open Gardens this weekend couldn’t fail to be delighted. For a modest charge of £3, there was a choice of 25 venues spread across a wide area on both sides of the river including public spaces such as the Memorial Gardens.
While the weather was challenging on Saturday, Sunday’s was perfect and, as you went from quintessential cottage gardens to hillside, town and riverside plots, there were plenty of places to sit quietly and take in the vista, or even have a cream tea.
Inspiration was delivered in spades for novice and experienced gardeners alike, and those wishing to grow veg as well as ornamental plants. There was a wide variety of garden designs, and both traditional and modern sculpture interest and water features. Some gardens belonged to modern properties, others to Belper’s familiar 18th Century mill cottages where planting was extremely thoughtful and complementary. On Short Row for example, effort had been made to use traditionally English plants such as heavily scented roses and old-fashioned perennials. Where space was at a premium there was imaginative use of container gardening. There were impressively productive greenhouses, organic plots and wildlife-friendly areas.
Garden owners were on hand to talk in depth about their gardens and the plants, so you really could go home full of ideas and practical tips.
Organisers Kathy Fairweather and Belper Town Council must be proud of Belper’s gardening community.
Nailed wasn’t able to tour every garden – but we’ll be back again next year for more. However, if you have any pictures of your own you would like us to include, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime, take a moment to browse our gallery.
Photographs copyright Emma Clinton.