As daffodils and cherry blossoms eclipse the winter gloom, another sure sign spring has sprung is the big reveal for the line-up of Waiheke’s Jassy Dean Trust Garden Safari – now in its 20th year.

The dates are set for November 7 and 8 and organisers say everyone asked put their hand up to help and promise a stunning line-up of gardens, workshops and events to mark the occasion.

The two-day event will showcase 10 gardens with workshops on a range of subjects from making a flower crown or tendril foraging to growing in Waiheke’s clay soil, garden design, rat control and composting.

There will be storytelling and song with Tanya Batt at Awaawaroa Eco Village and local ceramicists Belinda Fabris and Peter Baigent have joined forces on the Gnome Project, creating 20 garden gnomes to be painted by island artists for an auction event.

Christy Ralphs from Nourish Gardens will share her journey into growing cut flowers for sale at a special lunch event at Mudbrick Vineyard’s Archive restaurant.

And Ngaio’s Plant Sale is also back, with hundreds of self-propagated plants for sale with people invited to wander around her lush garden on both festival days.

Event organiser Michelle Barber says the garden festival has raised more than $600,000 since it started in 2001, with all proceeds going to sick children on the island.

• Liza Hamilton

Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now

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