Willow Park Patch
With the second year of lockdowns and the COVID-19 pandemic wearing on, the group behind the Discover the Gardens of Huron Perth tour is directing people to its website instead of its annual pamphlet.
While the pandemic has prevented some events that distributed the guide, many of the gardens can be easily visited while maintaining your distance, so organizer made the decision to provide the information online at www.gardensofhuronperth.com
One of the gardens that continues to see visitors is Willow Park Patch, Debbie Kuyvenhoven’s garden in Lower Town Wingham.
Kuyvenhoven said her garden is really more like a park to the surrounding community. “People wander through,” she said. “It’s right beside our house, and it feels like a public park, so people don’t feel like they’re snooping around by visiting.”
She said she has an open garden sign and a number of people have been through the garden this year, though it’s not a matter of numbers, but of repeat visitors.
“They become regulars,” she said. “It becomes part of their walking tour. Dads come with their kids and the dads sit and talk in the gazebo while the kids run around.”
She said the visitors include people walking their dogs, families and older couples and a day doesn’t go past that someone isn’t there. “There’s such a variety of people,” she said. “We had a couple of ladies that must have sat and talked for an hour there.”
She said that last summer was good, as the COVID-19 restrictions were loosened, and a 12-year-old went through the garden, returning a week later with his grandma to tour the site. “That’s the kind of thing that happens,” she said.
The garden is a colourful spot to take in spring with daffodils and magnolia in bloom. She said the seasonality of the garden makes it so, every three weeks, it’s a different experience, but it’s always full of life.
“Kids love running around with the trees to hide behind,” she said. “They don’t run through the flower beds, and it’s a place to have fun. That’s the idea I want it to be - just like a park.”
For more information, visit www.willowparkpatch.ca. 229 Arthur St, Wingham.