Willow weaving, walks and wildlife

Walks, willow weaving, wildlife and workshops will ‘wow’ visitors to Wimborne’s Knoll Gardens this year


GUIDED walks, willow weaving, wildlife days, workshops and outdoor yoga are among more than 40 events taking place at Wimborne’s Knoll Gardens this year.

The packed programme kicks-off with a popular mini-masterclass by Knoll’s owner of 23 years, Neil Lucas, as he provides enthusiastic encouragement and practical advice to help you  make the most of your gardens. A world authority on ornamental grasses, Neil’s ‘Preparing for Spring’ class is on March 11 from 10.30am to 12noon and costs £12. Book online or at the nursery.

Other spring events include a six-week Thursday morning outdoor yoga course starting on 6 April. Jackie Hayfield leads an hour’s session from 9am to 10am in the tranquillity of the garden before it is open to the public. Single sessions cost £10 or sign up for the whole course for £48. Call the nursery (01202 873931) to check availability and to book, or sign-up for the full course online.

A specialist Nurseries Plant Fair from 10am to 4pm on 22 April offers the chance to meet the experts and to buy top-quality, locally grown camellias, blueberries, azaleas, ferns and perennials, alongside Knoll’s own award-winning grasses. Woven willow and local wildlife organisations will also be on site. On 25 April a guided walk across Ferndown Common to Knoll Gardens will look at the similarities and differences of the landscape with Dorset Wildlife Trust. And an RSPB-led walk at 8am on 28 April offers the chance to listen to the spring bird calls as they greet a new day. There is much more to look forward to as the packed events programme unfolds and continues to run until the end of October. For full information go to www.knollgardens.co.uk

Alongside the public event programme the gardens’ charitable arm, the Knoll Gardens Foundation, is welcoming local groups to the garden free-of-charge on designated days as part of its drive to promote wildlife-friendly gardening to the local community. Special group days are available for local Art Groups, Camera Clubs, Horticultural Groups and members of the RSPB and DWT.  Full details and dates can be found online or call the nursery (01202 873931) for more information.