Does your area offer regular open gardens for touring? I’d love to see my town of Boise participate in the national Open Garden program operated by the Garden Conservancy, but we do have a well-run annual tour organized by the Idaho Botanical Garden.
Each year, there are six to eight open gardens that participants can visit in any order, located near each other within one district of the city.
Last year’s gardens were located in a couple of the wealthier riverside suburbs, and several of them could properly be called estates. This year’s were located in an urban neighborhood featuring fairly large (one to two acre) properties, many of which boasted extensive food gardens.
At $20 per person for IBG members, the tour is a real bargain. Not only do the gardens showcase many ideas that can translate to any size garden, but they also demonstrate which plants can be grown well in this area.
Another benefit is sheer inspiration: seeing other people’s ideas, appreciating their vision, glorying in the human-nature partnership that makes a garden.
Gardeners are, by and large, generous in my experience. I’m grateful for those who open their gardens so others can appreciate them and get ideas and inspiration from them. I’m also grateful that this year my Mom was able to join me touring the gardens.