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Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Annual summer garden tour returns on July 6
The Verdant Organic Oasis on Anne Street is one of the homes on the NOTL Horticultural Society's annual tour. SUPPLIED

The vibrant colours and scents of summer gardens will be on display again when the annual Niagara-on-the-Lake Horticultural Society Garden Tour returns on July 6.

Eight extraordinary gardens will be featured on the tour.

“For over 30 years, the ‘Gardeners Garden Tour’ has celebrated the hard work, passion and expertise of the garden owners in Niagara-on-the-Lake,” said Sandra Stokes, who co-chairs the event with Susan Jurbala.

“By curating a selection of exceptional gardens, this tour allows visitors to not only admire the beauty, but also learn directly from the homeowners who have poured their hearts into cultivating these exceptional gardens.”

Proceeds from the one-day event will be used to create two student scholarships, one at Niagara College and one at the Niagara Parks School of Horticulture.

The tour is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 6. Tickets, available now on Eventbrite, are $25 until July 5 and rise to $30 on the day of the tour. Children under 12 are free.

Tickets purchased by April 30 will be entered in a prize draw.

The NOTL Horticultural Society is one of the oldest horticultural societies in Ontario. It is a volunteer-run, charitable organization whose mission is to encourage the continual joy of learning about gardening. 

The annual summer tour is designed to showcase the talents of NOTL gardeners.

For this year’s tour, the society has curated eight unique gardens, each thoughtfully designed. The gardens, described by tour organizers, are:

Garden Getaway
Concession 4, Virgil: 
Discover a serene patio enclosed by a vibrant tapestry of perennials. A pear tree, Japanese maples, Solomon’s seal, Japanese barberry, trumpet honeysuckle, foxglove, beardtongue, Siberian pea shrub, daisies, and a pool flanked by stone and ornamental grasses completes this peaceful garden retreat.

Sensory Delight
Four Mile Creek, Virgil:
 A tranquil twin waterfall pond, vibrant goldfish and floating water lilies. Towering spruce, yew, maple, the stately tulip tree, corkscrew beech and a lush hosta patch. This pollinator-friendly garden engages all the senses, from the soothing sounds of cascading water to the vibrant colours and textures of the diverse flora.

Tropical Treasures
Loretta Drive, Virgil: 
A private oasis, this garden promises vibrant foliage. Windmill palms, pindo palms, southern magnolias, bananas, alocasias and crape myrtles grace the landscape. A serene escape where modern comfort meets botanical beauty.

Verdant Organic Oasis
Anne Street, Old Town, NOTL:
 This organic garden boasts a wide selection of plants to provide interest throughout the seasons. From the graceful paperbark maple and the vibrant ruby falls redbud to the whimsical corkscrew hazel and the stately hinoki cypress, the diverse foliage creates a visually captivating tapestry. A must-visit destination that promises to delight the senses and soothe the soul.

Nature’s Canvas
Paffard Street, Old Town, NOTL:
 Over the past five years, this property has been transformed into a vibrant garden oasis. Six sprawling perennial gardens, punctuated by river rock, patio stones, coloured gravel, water features, fruit trees and birdhouses are a testament to the owners’ creativity and passion for horticulture.

Serenity Sanctuary
King Street, Old Town, NOTL: Majestic evergreens shape the landscape, framing the verdant lawns and informal plantings of hedges of yews, boxwood and junipers. Emerald cedar hedges, Siberian spruce, kousa dogwood, burning bush and tulip trees. A place to escape from the chaos and craziness of modern life.

Designer’s Delight
Niagara Stone Road, Old Town, NOTL: Under a towering beech, a remarkable transformation. Abundant flower beds, evergreen shrubs, peonies, dogwood and rose of Sharon, hydrangea, hostas, ostrich ferns, magnolia trees, dogwood, Japanese maples, peonies, climbing hydrangeas, oak trees, chestnut trees, zebra grass. An enchanting landscape and picturesque garden.

As well, visitors will be able to meet the talented gardeners behind these exceptional landscapes and gain insights into their creative process as the tour offers an opportunity to learn, connect and celebrate the beauty of the season.

In addition to the unique gardens, the 2024 Garden Tour will highlight a special Bonsai Show, offering a unique perspective on the art of miniature tree cultivation.

Attendees will be able to admire the intricate details of these miniature landscapes, marvel at the patience and skill required for bonsai gardening and gain insights into this ancient Japanese art form.

Also included in the event are guided tours of the pollinator garden at Southbrook Winery, which was Canada’s first certified organic and biodynamic winery.

It has been using regenerative, organic and biodynamic farming techniques for more than 15 years.

Visitors will get a rare glimpse into sustainable winemaking practices and learn about the vital role of pollinators in the ecosystem.

For more information about the NOTL Horticultural Society and the Garden Tour, go to notlhortsociety.com or on Facebook @notlhortsociety.

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