Celebrate Spring together and enjoy the famous cherry blossom trees at The Grange Open Garden event. This is the first chance to enjoy these beautiful blossoms since the garden closed to the public 2 years ago. Places are limited to 30 people every 30 minutes to ensure everyone's safety, so booking is essential and places are going fast!
What: Open Garden event at The Grange (2016) Ltd (part of the QEF Group) accessed from The Green, TN17 4DN
Date and time: Saturday 2nd April 2022. 30 minute slots between 11.30 - 15.30
Cost: £5 per person with all proceeds supporting The Friends of Benenden Grange
VIP tour: 10am. Tickets costs £15 per person and include a copy of Naoko Abe's book
Early birds can also book a VIP Tour of the gardens at 10am with Chris Lane, who runs Witch Hazel Nursery in Kent, maintaining five National Plant Collections. He has worked as a college lecturer, serves on the RHS Woody Plant Committee and has been president of the International Plant Propagators' Society. He is author of Witch Hazels (RHS / Timber Press 2005) and co-author with James Compton of Wisteria The Complete Guide (RHS 2019).
The garden at The Grange was carefully cultivated by Collingwood Ingram, nicknamed 'Cherry' Ingram, due to his dedication to ornamental cherry trees. Cherry Ingram was responsible for reintroducing the great white flowering cherry tree, 'Taihaku' back to Japan, where it had previously died out.
The tree he used for this still stands proudly in the garden today, along with a number of fascinating trees and plants, including his original hybrid cherry tree, 'Kursar', an Atlas Cedar tree taken as a seedling from the Atlas mountains and a 'yakushimanum' rhododendron.
Today, The Grange in Cranbrook, Kent, is home for up to 25 adults with learning disabilities. The caring team from The Grange (2016) Ltd support each person to lead an enriched and fulfilled life in a range of residential and supported living settings.
New for 2022, the garden also includes 9 ornamental cherry trees that were gifted as part of the Sakura Cherry Tree Project, which commemorates the ongoing friendship between Japan and the UK. The trees are 9 out of 6000 being planted across the UK, as part of a project that was launched in a joint communique by then Prime Ministers Shinzo Abe and Theresa May in Japan in Autumn 2017.
These wonderful trees were planted at The Grange in November 2021 with a celebratory planting ceremony that included special guests of the people supported by The Grange. Each cherry tree has been dedicated to a generous supporter of the charity and these trees form part of The Grange's plans to honour the legacy of Collingwood Ingram.
On 2nd April there will also be a limited number of copies of the book ‘'Cherry' Ingram - The Englishman Who Saved Japan's Blossoms' written by Naoko Abe available to purchase. There will also be stall holders selling plants and other items, with cash only purchases. Raffle tickets will also be available with a range of prizes including Japanese Cherry Tree, Japanese Maple, book 'Cherry' Ingram The Englishman Who Saved Japan's Blossoms by Naoko Abe and tickets to visit Hole Park.
Book your VIP Tour or Grange Open Garden places and find out more about parking and how to access the garden.