For some the combination of arts & music & gardens = great pleasure. For others, one or two (or none!) are required for a good time. This full combination becomes an enjoyable reality at Arts and Music in the Gardens, the gardens being the Gardens at HCP – the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific, a boring name for a charming place. (You may encounter it on some maps as Glendale Gardens, a much more pleasing name in my view).
9th and 10th August 2014 are special days here for the festival. But let’s take a tour first.
Firstly, let’s clarify that these are not display gardens thronged with crowds like the Butchart Gardens. Instead they are informal and quiet with over 10,000 varieties of flowers, plants, shrubs and trees set out in over 30 themed areas on nine acres. My favourite is the Takarta Japanese Garden which borders onto the Zen Garden and the new Bonsai Garden. You might prefer the rhodendrons, the winter garden, the lilies, sculptures, mediterranean or childrens’ gardens. I also like the fact that, on non-festival days, you have to walk into the office to ask to pay the reasonable entry charge! It is midway between Victoria and the Butchart Gardens at 505 Quayle Road.
Arts and Music in the Gardens is an annual event held in 2014 from 11am to 5pm on Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th August. You’ll be entertained by local musicians as you wander by the art displays from over 60 artists. Walk through the Gardens to the lower field to gaze with a different kind of awe on a gathering of gleaming vintage cars at the Classic Car Show. Then savour the healthy food at their Nourish Bistro. And, of course, the summer floral setting will be a delight!