Garden’s future in good hands
When Alan Trott purchased a plot of land on Racecourse Road 37 years ago, it had just 13 trees on it.
Over many years he transformed it into a garden that is now recognised nationally, and internationally, as one of significance. So when he and wife Catherine decided it was time to move on to smaller pastures this year, a group of Ashburton people decided it had to be looked after and its standards maintained.
Trotts Gardens, on Racecourse Road in Ashburton, is a popular wedding venue with a chapel on site and endless photo opportunities among the blooming rhododendrons and perfectly trimmed hedges. It’s owned by the Trotts Garden Charitable Trust.
The trust has employed Jane Ashworth as live-in gardener, and a lengthy list of volunteers are prepared to give up their time to lovingly tend to the garden and mow the lawns – a six hour job every time.
It’s hoped the peaceful gardens surrounds might one day be utilised by groups like Hospice, and for horticulture and educational classes.
Trotts Garden Charitable Trust trustee, Jo Taylor, said the Trust planned to enhance what Trotts Gardens already had to offer.
The Trotts Garden Charitable Trust is made up of five trustees, and they took over on September 15. David Askin has come on board as head gardener in a voluntary capacity, and the list of volunteers includes many people who have been long time friends of the Trotts, and who had always admired the gardens.
‘‘Some of them would say they’ve never even been able to touch a weed in the garden before,’’ Taylor said.
Trotts Garden will host a business breakfast with Stephen Tindall, who will speak on leadership and his role within the America’s Cup, on November 3. Proceeds will go towards a leadership scholarship under the Advance Ashburton banner.
There will then be an open day at Trotts Garden on November 5, from 11am until 3pm, with garden tours conducted by Alan Trott, at 11.30am, 12.30pm and 1.30pm, and live music. Entry will be via donation.
‘‘The open day is really about showcasing the garden and letting the community know the beautiful gardens are being protected for the future,’’ Taylor said.
All proceeds will go towards the maintenance and development of the property.
Alister McLaren (left) and Alan Watson are among the volunteers looking after the large Trotts Gardens.