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Celebrating twenty years of this fantastic public garden, Oxhey Open Gardens 2014 includes demonstrations, talks and flower related give-aways throughout the weekend, raising money for the Peace Hospital in Watford. Opening in 1994 with just two local fields and an allotment, Oxhey Open Gardens now involves residents from all across the local areas throughout Watford. For a small entry fee you can visit a number of private, residential gardens in the area, viewing the best in local gardening and flower design that Watford has to offer. To celebrate its twentieth year, the 2014 edition of this event will also include talks from local gardeners and demonstrations in some of front and back gardens on show. Raising money for local charities and inspiring local gardeners, this event is a key feature of Watford's flower and gardening calendar.
Every year the Watford New Hope Trust opens it garden to the public in a bid to raise money and inspire gardeners in the local community. As well as being able to admire this entirely volunteer developed garden, you can also donate in exchange for seedling, pots, and other gardening paraphernalia, and enjoy the live music, gardening talks and children's entertainment.
In close proximity to the city parks of London and also to the Hertfordshire countryside and its country houses, estates and National Trust gardens, Watford is ideally located to experience some of the best gardens and green spaces in the country. Here are some of the best in the local area.
Situated a short drive from Watford town centre in Rickmansworth, this fifteenth and sixteenth century manor and its gardens are one of the most beautiful in the area. With a fascinating history, including the patronage of Elizabeth I and Henry VIII, the garden is maintained in the same style as it has been throughout its history. The garden itself is split into a number of themed sections, including a sunken garden, rose gardens, and a white garden; and with ornate topiary, medicinal plants, and plenty of colourful flowers and plants all year round, the garden is not lost in the shadow of the stunning manor it surrounds. The main feature of the garden is the Yew tree maze, which at some points is at over two meters high.
It is best visited in Summer when the tulips and herbaceous plantings are their most colourful and you can really appreciate the beauty of this historical garden.
Hatfield House dates from the seventeenth century and was once the home of the Cecil family and Elizabeth I. The expansive gardens surrounding the house and out buildings are testament to this Royal connection, with regal flowerbeds, stunning trees and beautiful landscaping. A combination of wild gardens and woodland with more formal parterre and flowerbeds, the gardens are home to a variety of species, as well as a vegetable garden and topiary.
A Green Flag Award winner for the fourth time in 2013, Cheslyn House and Gardens is one of the most beautiful and well-kept in Watford town centre. Owned originally by a husband and wife architectural team, the garden is well designed and thought out, with formal sections at the front and middle gradually giving way to woodland and wilderness at the edges. The garden is home to a number of different species of tree, including tulip trees, Indian bean trees and maidenhair trees, as well as daffodils, snowdrops, bluebells and other woodland flowers. You can also see some local wildlife here, from squirrels and badgers to foxes and even Muntjac deer.
At 77 hectares, Cassiobury Park is Watford's largest public park. Also a recipient of the Green Flag award on numerous occasions, its main feature are its huge, ancient trees, some of which are over one hundred years old. In the summer months these trees are joined by beds of tulips, daffodils and rhododendron bushes, which add colour and variety to the garden. The park is cut through by the River Glade, which runs its entire length and is home to a variety of freshwater fish.
There are plenty of beautiful gardens to see in Watford, and with local community gardening projects happening there's always something to get involved in. If you've been inspired by any of these gardens or projects, why not order some flowers online with Arena Flowers?