As always, the start of the Chelsea Fringe coincided with the RHS Chelsea Flower Show. It was encouraging to see the link between gardening and health being explored even more this year. Garden designer and member of the Landscape, Gardens and Health Network, Juliet Sargeant, did a brilliant job working with the teams at Gardeners World and at Chelsea to publicise the importance of nature and gardens for our health.
It's crucial for the future of our parks and green spaces that both policy makers and members of the public grasp the message. It's easy for those of us who are immersed in the gardening world to think that it's common sense, but there are still plenty of people who don't spend much time outside. It's far more difficult for them to appreciate the link. The more media coverage the subject gets, the better.
The National Federation of Parks and Green Spaces now has over 5,000 Friends Groups registered - groups of people who want their local green spaces to be appreciated and protected. The Federation's goal is to have a Friends Group for every one of our 27,000 urban green spaces. Do you know a park with a Friends Group who have yet to sign up? http://www.natfedparks.org.uk/membership-1.html
Does Capability Brown deserve a place on the back of the new £20 note? We have a few weeks left to consider - the deadline for nominations is 19th July. There's a link on the Capability Brown Festival website and plenty of other Brown related news and events to catch up on too. http://www.capabilitybrown.org/news/capability-brown-next-ps20-note
Masses of opportunities for being outside and making the most of the good weather. A few dates for your diary:
6 - 7 June, Bristol's Clifton and Hotwells' 2nd Open Gardens Weekend http://www.cliftonhotwells.org.uk/greensquare.html
13-14 June, Open Garden Squares http://www.opensquares.org/
24 July - 2 August, Love Parks Week http://www.loveparks.org/home/1816
22 September, The AGT and Avon Gardens Trust Study Day, in conjunction with the GHS
'Lancelot 'Capability' Brown at Kings Weston: A Re-assessment Exploring his Legacy of Comfort and Elegance'