Gardening enthusiasts helped to raise more than £3m for good causes last year.

And dozens of private gardens in and around Wiltshire played their part.

The National Garden Scheme said 2022 marked a return to normality after the Covid lockdowns, even though most of the country suffered a prolonged drought.

The lion’s share, £2.45m of the £3.11m raised, goes to some of the UK’s best-loved nursing and health charities, many of which have continued to provide vital support to the NHS and communities in the wake of the pandemic and who are now struggling to provide services in the new cost of living crisis.

The long-term nature of funding from the National Garden Scheme allows these charities to continue the provision of critical community nursing services, end-of-life care and respite for families and carers.

Chairman Rupert Tyler said: “Despite the worst of the pandemic having passed our beneficiaries continue to support those in often dire need and who have now been confronted with the challenge of the new cost of living crisis.

“This continues to place unbearable pressure on many aspects of their work, and we are delighted to be able to continue our support in such a meaningful way.”

The scheme relies primarily on the income generated by admission at its garden gates and through the sale of plants, teas and cake. Extra cash comes from fundraising events such as online talks, garden parties, and commercial partnerships.

NGS chief executive George Plumptre said: “The enormous contribution by our garden owners and volunteers was added to by other fundraising activities in 2022.

A special fundraising event at Temperate House at Kew raised over £48,000, and in July we hosted our third Great British Garden Party, giving the opportunity for anyone – whether they open their garden or not – to have an event with friends or family and raise funds for the National Garden Scheme, generating £30,000.”

Last year also saw two funding milestones. More than £10m has been donated to Marie Curie since a partnership was formed in 1996

And 10 years of continued partnership has resulted in more than £1.7m handed to Parkinson’s UK. The charity estimates that around 7,000 patients currently have support from the nurse posts that have been funded by the National Garden Scheme.

“We know that the long-term continuity of our funding from year to year is very unusual and our beneficiaries have emphasised that this is a key quality in the support we are able to give to them. It is something of which we are enormously proud,” added George.

Looking ahead to the 2023 season Rupert said: “We will do our utmost to increase the support we are able to give our beneficiary charities and we are sure that anyone who reads our 2022 Impact Report that accompanies this donation news, will see just how impactful a visit to one of our gardens can be.”

Among the donations from money raised last year are £450k to Macmillan Cancer Support, £450k to Hospice UK, £100k to Maggies the cancer charity, £90k to spinal injury charity Horatio’s Garden and £80k to ABF The Soldiers’ Charity.

The Working for Gardeners Association was awarded £65k, the Garden Museum was given £10k and English Heritage’s historic and botanic garden training programme was supported with £125k.

The full report is available online at

Among the garden openings planned for this year are Corsham Court, Salthrop House near Wroughton, Riverside House near Marlborough, Chisenbury Priory near Upavon, Broadleas House gardens at Devizes and Seend Manor near Melksham.